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tihx<^xy of t:he t:heolo0ical ^eminarjo 





BV 167 .Mil 1896 
Macalister, Robert Alexander 
Stewart, 1870-1950. 
- Ecclesiastical vestments 






Brass of Simon de Wenslagh (circ. 1360), Wensley, 
Yorkshire (showing the Eucharistic vestments of a priest of 
the Western Church). 



^hcir Bebclopmcitt anb 2|tstarB 



Member of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland 




WITHIN comparatively recent years the 
discovery has been made that it is 
possible to treat the Bible, for critical 
purposes, as though it were an ordinary item of 
national literature, while maintaining a fitting 
reverence for it as the inspired Word ; and that 
by so doing a flood of sidelight is cast upon it 
which illuminates the obscurity of some of its most 
dlflicult passages. 

So, to compare lesser things with greater, it is 
possible and advisable to discard all feeling of 
ecclesiastlclsm (so to term it) when speaking of 
ecclesiastical antiquities. The science of eccle- 
siology is of comparatively recent growth, and 
it has hitherto suffered much at the hands of 
those who have approached it not so much to 
learn the plain lessons it teaches, as to force it to 
declare the existence or non-existence in early or 

viii Preface. 

mediaeval times of certain rites and observances. 
While we should treat ancient churches and their 
furniture with respect — a respect which should 
not be denied to the despised, though often quaint 
and interesting, high pews and west galleries — 
as being edifices or instruments formed for the 
use of the worshippers of God, yet for antiquarian 
purposes they should be examined and dissected in 
exactly the same spirit as that in which we investi- 
gate the temples of ancient Greece, or the stone 
weapons of prehistoric man. In this spirit the 
author of the present book has worked. 

Ecclesiology, besides its sentimental connection 
with ecclesiasticism, possesses many features which 
render it the most popular branch of the great 
all-embracing science of archaeology. The objects 
with which it is concerned appeal strongly to the 
senses ; the finest works of the architect, the 
limner, the silversmith, the engraver, the em- 
broiderer, the illuminator, and the musician, come 
within its scope ; they are accessible to all who 
live within reach of an ancient church or a 
moderately good museum, and the pleasant ex- 
cursions and companionships with which its votaries 
are favoured invest its pursuit with the happiest 
associations. Above all, it lacks that terrible 
obstacle which lies at the threshold of almost 
every other subject of serious archaeological study 
— the necessity of attaining perfection in at least 

Preface. ix 

one foreign language. No one can form more 
than the merest dilettante acquaintance with the 
antiquities of India, Egypt, Greece, Ireland, or any- 
other country, without mastering the language in 
which the records of the country are written ; but 
the merest smattering of mediaeval dog-Latin is 
quite sufficient to open the door to high (not, 
perhaps, the highest') attainments in ecclesiology. 

These manifold attractions have resulted in 
hampering the study of ecclesiology with a serious 
drawback, which is wanting in nearly all the other 
branches of archaeology. The investigation of the 
marvellous antiquities of the four countries just 
mentioned — or, indeed, of almost any other 
country — can be undertaken by a student with 
the certainty that if he applies himself to it suffi- 
ciently to master the many difficulties which will, 
no doubt, present themselves, he will be in a 
position to break ground as yet untouched ; his 
knowledge will enable him to make original 
discoveries of his own. But it is far otherwise in 
ecclesiology. So easily understood are the facts of 
the subject (except in a few obscure points relating 
to the early Church) ; so definite are the statements 
of the numberless records, when the vagaries of 
symbolical theorizers are sifted away from them ; 
so countless has been, and is, the army of students, 
that the scope for research-work is reduced to a 
minimum ; hardly anything is left for the originally- 

X Preface, 

minded worker but to discover the personal names 
of the different artists whose handiworks he sees 
before him, or else to propound some startling and 
revolutionary theory respecting the use of low-side 
windows or Easter sepulchres. 

In the subdivision of ecclesiology with which 
this book is concerned, originality, whether of fact 
or treatment, is practically impossible. This work 
cannot claim to be more than a compilation, but it 
can claim to fill a space not exactly occupied by 
any other book, in that it gives in a brief and 
convenient form the principal facts connected with 
vestments and their use throughout the chief sub- 
divisions of the Christian Church ; it is not, as are 
almost all other works on the subject, confined to 
one branch only, or at most to the great Churches 
of the West and the East, but includes as well the 
smaller and more isolated communities, and those 
branches of the Universal Church which have 
undergone reformation. 

Exception may possibly be taken to the manner 
in which the alleged symbolism of vestments has 
been treated. But it is impossible to overlook the 
facts. If, as is now the opinion of every leading 
ecclesiologist, the vestments are the natural result 
of evolution from civil Roman costume, it is 
clearly ludicrous to suppose that when they were 
first worn they possessed the symbolical meanings 
they are alleged to bear ; the symbolism is as 

Preface. xi 

much an accretion as are the jewels and the em- 
broidery of the middle ages. Moreover, the 
symbolical meanings attached to them are so 
obviously the ' private judgments' of the writers 
who describe them, and are so irreconcilable and 
so far-fetched, that to the unbiased mind they do 
not appear worthy of serious treatment. 

In some recent books on ecclesiological and 
antiquarian matters Greek words are transliterated 
into English characters. This practice has not 
been followed in the present work because of the 
unsatisfactory appearance of Greek words in Roman 
dress, and because the Greek alphabet is familiar 
to all students. Words of other languages, such 
as Russian or Armenian, are, however, expressed in 
English letters, as their alphabets are not so well 
known, and they are not so easily set up in native 

I must record my indebtedness to my lamented 
friend the late Prof. Middleton for useful hints and 
assistance ; to Dr F. R. Fairbank, of St Leonard' s- 
on-Sea, for many notes and references which have 
been of great value to me, and especially for the 
loan of several blocks ; to Mr W. J. Kaye for 
the loan of a rubbing of the Sessay brass ; to the 
Rev. S. Schechter for kind assistance in questions 
which arose in the first chapter ; to the Rev. 
A. D. A. van Scheltema for information regarding 
the Church of Holland ; and for many helps and 



suggestions to my father, to whom, in acknow- 
ledgment of the interest he has throughout shown 
in the preparation of the book, I wish to dedicate 
it. A list of the principal works laid under con- 
tribution is given in an Appendix. 

R. A. S. M. 













OF VESTMENTS - - - - "137 



xiv Contents, 














INDEX ------ 262 


{For full titles of sources follozved see Appendix III) 





Bock) - - - . - _ ^ 



RAVENNA. {Rock) - - - - 46 


MUSEUM, {B/oxam) - - - - 49 


STAFF. {Smith and Cheetham) - - 57 


AND ORNAMENT. {ArchcBological Association 
/ourftal) - - - - - 73 


TAPESTRY. ( Willemin) - - - 76 


News) - - - - - 78 


xvi List of Illustrations, 





library). {Marriott) - - - 97 


MAYENCE - - - - - I 01 


15. FIGURE OF A POPE {temp. INNOCENT III). {Rock) 108 





SHIRE ------ 147 


CAMBRIDGE - - - - " ^S© 

21. CHRYSOME CHILD. {Haities) - - - 1 72 
2 2. A COPE-CHEST, YORK MINsTER. {ArchcCologLCal 

Associatiofi Journal) - - - - i73 

23. ARMENIAN PRIEST. {Fortcscue) - - -177 

24. MALABAR PRIEST. {Howard) - - - 1 78 

EASTERN CHURCH. {King) - - 179-185 


OF FRANCE. {Quick) - - - - 205 


{Archceologia) - - - - - 216 




THE Study of ecclesiastical history or an- 
tiquities can be pursued from either of 
two Standpoints. We may take into 
account those essentially religious or theological 
elements which distinguish this subject from all 
other branches of antiquarian science, and keep 
them prominently before us during our investiga- 
tions ; or else, disregarding those elements more or 
less completely, we may consider the subject wholly 
from the point of view of the antiquary. 

As a general rule, those investigators who lay 
stress on the ecclesiastical rather than on the 
antiquarian side of ecclesiology and its various 
subdivisions have been attracted to the study not 
so much by the intrinsic interest which, in some 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

degree, every branch of archaeology possesses, as 
by the wish to settle controversial questions relating 
to Church doctrine, usage, or discipline. This is 
especially true of the important section of eccle- 
siology with which these pages are concerned. 
There are two schools into which the students of 
Church vestments may be divided — the ritualistic 
and the antiquarian. Each strives to attain full 
knowledge of the subject, and the means employed 
by both schools are the same — the evidence drawn 
from a patient comparison of the works of authors 
and artists of successive periods. But while those 
of the purely antiquarian school regard the know- 
ledge thus gained as in itself the chief end of their 
researches, those of the other consider it rather as 
a stepping-stone, leading to proofs of the Divine 
appointment of the use of vestments, and in- 
dicating regulations to govern the usage of vest- 
ments in the modern Church. 

It is not surprising that the results of the in- 
vestigations of two schools, having aims so diverse 
in view, should be mutually incompatible. Accord- 
ing to the views of some members of the ritualistic 
school, the vestments of the Christian Church were 
modelled directly upon the vestments of the Jewish 
priesthood ; and as minute instructions for the 
shapes and usage of the latter were laid down in 
the divinely-revealed laws of Moses, they thus 
claim an at least indirect Divine appointment for 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 3 

the Christian vestments. The antiquarian party, 
on the other hand, are unanimous in holding that 
the vestments of the Christian Church were evolved, 
by a natural process, from the ordinary costume of 
a Roman citizen of the first or second century of 
our era. 

The consideration of these two theories must 
first occupy our attention. Neither is absolutely 
correct ; for, although the balance of probability 
is enormously in favour of the second view, yet 
this theory, in the form in which it is often 
stated, does not cover certain changes which 
were made in the textures, outlines, and number 
of the vestments while the Church was yet com- 
paratively young. These changes were all intro- 
duced to assimilate, as far as possible, the Jewish 
and Christian systems ; and thus it may be said 
that both views contain an element of truth. 

The theory of a Levitical origin is the older ot 
the two ; in fact, it was the first, and for many 
years the only, solution proposed. We shall 
therefore at the outset devote a page or two to 
considering its merits. Very few, even among the 
students of the ritualistic school, now hold it 
absolutely. The weight of argument which can 
be brought to bear against it is so great that it is 
almost universally abandoned as untenable. 

For comparative purposes, it will be necessary 
at this stage to introduce a short descriptive 

Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

catalogue of the vestments of the Levitical priest- 
hood, as prescribed in the Book of Exodus (chap, 
xxviii). Josephus (* Antiquities,' iii 7) is also a 
locus classicus on the subject, and some additional 
particulars from that source are here incorporated : 

I. The Drawers or ' Breeches ' of Linen, 

II. The Tunic of Linen (' coat of fine linen,' 
Exod. xxviii 39). — Josephus tells us that this 
tunic was of fine linen or flax doubled ; that it 
reached to the feet, fitting close to the body, and 
was furnished with tight sleeves. It was girded 
to the breast, a little above the level of the 
elbows, by 

III. The Girdle. — This was a strip of linen 
which, according to Josephus, was four fingers 
broad ; according to Maimonides,* three fingers 
broad and thirty-two cubits long. It was wound 
many times round the body ; the ends were then 
tied over the breast and hung down to the feet, 
except when the priest was engaged in sacrifice or 
other service, in which case he threw it over his 
left shoulder, so that it should not impede him in 
his duty. It was elaborately embroidered with 
flowers, worked in scarlet, purple, and blue 

* Mishneh Torah, VIII, section de vasts sanctuar., 
viii 19, where some other particulars are to be found 
regarding the textures of which the Jewish vestments were 
made, etc. 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments, 5 

IV. The Priest's Cap (' bonnet,' Exod. xxviii 
40). — This was an ordinary turban, fastened round 
the head. The description given by Josephus is 

clear and detailed. He 
says : * Upon his head he 
wears a cap, not brought 
to a conic form nor encir- 
cling the whole head, but 
still covering more than 
half of it, which is called 
mesnaemphthes ; and its 
make is such that it 
seemeth to be a crown 
[garland], being made of 
thick swathes, but the 
^ contexture is of linen, 
and it is doubled round 
many times and sewed 
together ; besides which, 
a pieceof fine linencovers 
the cap from the whole 
upper part, and reaches down to the forehead and 
hides the seams of the swathes, which otherwise 
would appear improperly.'* 

* Yirlp Se T?]^ Kecfidkris 4>opd ttIXov aKCOvov, ov ^uKVOvp.evov 
els Tvacrav dvrriv, dXX' ctt' oXlyov, vTrep/SelS-qKOTa ^fiecrrjs ' 
KaXuTcii fxlv fj.€(Tvaefj4e'>]S. rrj Se KaraaKevy TOLodros ^(ttlv 
(1)5 (rT€(/)av7/ SoK€lv, e^ vcfxiorfxaros, Xiveov racvia 7r€770irifM€vr] 
iraxda, koI yap k-nrTva-crop^vov pdinerai TroXXaKis. e-etra 

Fig. I. — Vestments of the 
Jewish Priesthood. 

Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

These four vestments constituted the complete 
equipment of the ordinary Jewish priest, as pre- 
scribed in the Mosaic law. The high-priest, how- 
ever, added four more, which were as follows : 

V. The Tunic of Blue ('robe of the ephod,' 
Exod. xxviii 31). — This was a long garment 
which, according to some authorities, reached to 
the feet, but according to others to the knees only. 
It was woven in one piece, with an aperture 
through which the head of the wearer was passed ; 
this aperture was guarded by a binding or braid 
to prevent it from tearing. Round the lower hem 
of this garment were hung golden bells and models 
of pomegranates, alternating one with another. 
The meaning of this remarkable ornament is not 
clear, and several explanations have been advanced 
to account for it ; all, however, fanciful, and not 
worth recording here. 

VI . The Ephod ^ which was at once the most 
elaborate and the most important of the Jewish 
vestments, is more fully described than any of the 
rest. The superiority of this vestment over the 
others is due to the part which it, and the breast- 
plate intimately connected with it, played in the 
mysterious revelations by which the children of 
Israel were guided during the period of the 

cnv^uiv avioOiv dvTov iKirepikpyjerai SiyKOvaa fJ-^xpt /xertoTrov, 
T^'jv T€ pa<fii]v T-qs Taivtas kul to drr' avT/Js dirpeTrh KaXvTT- 
Tovcra — Translation from Whiston. 

'The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 7 

Theocracy. For us, however, it would be as 
irrelevant as it would be futile to speculate on 
the nature of the revelation, or the instrumentality 
of the ephod in indicating the Divine will to the 
priest. We are here concerned only with the 
ephod as an element in the equipment of the high- 
priest, with its shape, and with such particulars of 
its ritual use as we can find directly stated in the 
different authorities. 

' The ephod,' says Josephus, was * woven to the 
depth of a cubit, of several colours [gold, blue, 
purple, and scarlet are enumerated in Exodus] ; 
it was made with sleeves also ; nor did it appear 
to be at all differently made from a short coat.'* 
The vestment seems to have consisted of two 
pieces, a front and a back, which were buttoned 
together by two onyx stones, one on each shoulder, 
set in bezils or ' ouches,' and engraved with the 
names of the twelve tribes, six on one, six on the 
other. Round the waist was passed a girdle, which 
was an essential part of the vestment — indeed, 
Josephus tells us that the girdle and the ephod 
were sewn together. This girdle, which was made 
of materials similar to those which constituted the 
ephod, seems to have been embroidered elaborately 
with coloured threads. 

■* Y<^av^ei5 €7rt (3ddos 7r7])(yaLOV eK re \pu)fxaTix)U TravTOiwv 
Kal ■)(^pva-ov a-viximroLKiXixkvov , . . . xeipLcn re rjcTKrifxevos, kol 
no Travrl a-^rjixari \LT(d)V dvai TTiTroL-qjikvos. 

8 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

The ritual uses of the ephod, even apart from 
its supernatural associations, are obscure. It is 
distinctly implied both in Exodus and by Josephus 
that the vestment was intended for the use of the 
high-priest alone ; yet we find allusions scattered 
through the early historical books of the Old 
Testament which clearly indicate that it was worn 
by others as well. Thus, we read in i Sam. xxii 1 8 
that Doeg, commanded by Saul to fall on the 
priests who had assisted David, * slew . . . four- 
score and five persons that did wear a linen ephod.' 
Again, Samuel, when a child in the service of the 
priests, ' ministered before the Lord . . . girded 
with a linen ephod' (i Sam. ii i8). Further, we 
read that King David himself, when he escorted 
the ark from the house of Obed-Edom to Jerusalem, 
was ' girded with a linen ephod.' In these three 
passages we read of an ephod being worn by the 
minor priest, the acolyte, and the layman, for none 
of whom it was originally intended. The most 
probable explanation seems to be that the ephod, 
originally intended as a vestment for the high-priest 
alone, was gradually assumed, probably in a less 
elaborate form, by the minor priests as well — when 
or how we cannot say. This explanation assumes 
that the regulation was originally laid down as it 
stands in Exodus; but it is possible that the more 
stringent restrictions may not be earlier than the 
recension of Ezra. 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 9 

We learn from the incidents of Gideon (Judg. 
viii 27) and of Micah (Judg. xvii 5 ; xviii 14 
et seq.) that the ephod, or, rather, copies of it, 
early became objects of superstitious veneration. 
In the two latter passages quoted, as well as in 
Hos. V 4, the vestment is coupled with the 
teraphim or penates, to the worship of which the 
Israelites showed marked inclination at different 
periods of their history. It may be noticed in 
passing that Ephod, which signifies 'giver of 
oracles,' is used as a personal name (Num. 
xxxiv 23). 

VII. The Breastplate of the Ephod. — This was 
a rectangular piece of cloth of the same material 
as the ephod. That it might the better hold the 
precious stones with which it was set, it was 
doubled, its shape when so treated being that of a 
perfect square, with a side of about nine inches 
long. The stones were twelve in number, and 
fixed in settings of gold, being arranged in four 
rows of three each. On each stone was engraved 
the name of one of the twelve tribes. 

This breastplate was secured by two plaited or 
twisted chains of gold, fastened at the one end to 
the bezils of the shoulder-pieces of the ephod, at 
the other to rings of gold in the upper corners 
of the breastplate, and by two blue cords secured 
to rings of gold in the lower corners of the breast- 
plate and in the sides of the ephod above the 

lo Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

embroidered girdle. Josephus asserts that there 
was an aperture in the ephod immediately under 
the breastplate. For this statement there is no 
Scriptural authority ; but it is possible that it is 
the record of a modification in the details of the 
vestment naturally evolved and established at some 
time subsequent to the institution of the vestment 

VIII. The Mitre. — This did not differ in 
essence from the head-dress of the priests except 
in one important respect — the addition of a gold 
plate, set on a lace of blue, and bearing the 
inscription, ' Holy to Jehovah.' Josephus does 
not mention this plate, but describes the mitre as 
a kind of triple tiara, surmounted by a flower- 
shaped cup of gold, and covering the turban 
proper."^ This, however, is quite at variance with 
the original laws on the subject. 

In one respect these vestments are similar to 
those which it will be our duty to describe in the 
following pages. Although there is no injunction 
on the subject in the Law, the Talmud states 
clearly that ' he who wears the vestments of the 
priests outside the temple does a thing forbidden.' 

* *Y7re/) avTov Se crvveppaixix^vos erepo'S e^ vaKivOov tt^ttol- 
KiXfJiiVos, 7r€pup\€Tai 8k crT€(f)avo<s xpvcreo'i IttI t pi(TTOi\iav 
KexaXK€Vjxhos. OdXXei S' ctt' avno kolXv^, xP^'^^^"^ '^V 
aaKxdpti) (SoTavY) irap rjjjLiv Xeyofxevrj a7ro/x€yui/x7^/x€vos, vo<i Se 
Kva/xov ^FiXXrjviov. 

T^he Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 1 1 

It is admitted by almost all students that the 
vestments during the first six or eight centuries of 
the Christian era were of much greater simpHcity 
than those of later times. The evidence of con- 
temporary art is overwhelmingly opposed to any 
other view. This fact being admitted, we need 
not be surprised by finding that until the eighth 
or ninth century no attempt was made to trace 
any connection between the elaborate vestments 
which we have just described, and the vestments 
worn by those who ministered in the offices of 
Christian worship. 

It is true that until the time we have mentioned 
Churchmen did not greatly trouble themselves 
with investigations into the history of the religion 
they professed or the ritual they performed. But 
it is also true that several authors before this date 
enumerate the Jewish vestments, and enter at length 
into the figurative meanings which they were alleged 
to bear ; but not one of these refers to any supposed 
genealogical connection — if the expression be per- 
missible — between the two systems. This would 
be inexplicable if the Christian vestments were 
actually derived from the Jewish ; for not only 
would the resemblance between the two be obvious, 
but the tradition of the assumption by Christian 
clerics of the vestments originally instituted for 
the Jewish priesthood would still be fresh in the 
minds of the authors. Yet not only do these 

12 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

writers not point out any resemblance between 
the two : they even make use of words and phrases 
which point to considerable differences between the 
outward appearance of Jewish and Christian vesture. 
Apart from these considerations, may we not 
ask with reason how the early Christians, a poor 
and persecuted sect, could possibly assume and 
maintain an elaborate and expensive system of 
vestments such as the Jewish? And if the as- 
sumption had been made after the days of per- 
secution were past, surely some record of the 
transaction would have been preserved till our own 
day ? We possess a tolerably full series of the 
acts and transactions of ecclesiastical courts in all 
parts of the known world from the earliest times — 
how is it that all record of such an important 
proceeding has perished ? 

The first hint of the idea of the Mosaic origin 
of the Christian vestments is given by Rabanus 
Maurus, Archbishop of Mainz, in his treatise ' De 
Institutione Clericorum,'* written about the year 
850. In the first book of this tract he discusses 
each Christian vestment in turn, endeavouring to 
find parallels to some of them among the vestments 
of the Jewish priesthood, but without much success. 
The seed thus sown, however, rapidly bore fruit 
among subsequent writers, who expanded the 
theory with great elaboration. 
'^' I, cap. xiv et seq. (Migne, ' Patrologia,' vol. cvii, col. 306). 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments, 1 3 

Many of the identifications brought forward by 
some of the late writers are very far-fetched, and 
mutually contradictory. To these but little weight 
can be attributed. It is a significant fact that 
none of the writers who endeavour to find parallels 
between the two systems can discover an equivalent 
among the Jewish vestments for the chasuble. 
Now, if for each of the Christian vestments there 
existed a corresponding vestment among those of 
the Jews, it would be singular that the most 
important of the former should be unrepresented 
among the latter. The maniple, too, has no 
equivalent (this, however, is more intelligible, since 
that ornament was certainly a later introduction) ; 
while the amice is the only vestment that even the 
most ingenious can produce to represent the ephod, 
though the similarity between the two is of the 

There is another important point which the 
advocates of a Mosaic origin for Christian vest- 
ments overlook. The early Christians certainly 
did borrow many details of their worship from the 
Jews who lived around them, and from whose 
religion many of them had been converted ; but 
these details were taken not from the antiquated 
ritual of the temple worship, but from the syna- 
gogue worship, to which they had been accustomed. 
Now, the vestments which we have described above 
were appointed for the tabernacle worship and the 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

temple worship, its direct successor, whereas no 
vestments were at any time or by any authority 
appointed for use in the synagogue worship f and 
hence the Christian vesture cannot be said to * come 
directly ' from the Jewish. 

We have discussed the theory of a Levitical 
origin on purely a priori grounds, making only 
the slightest allusion to the vestments themselves 
as we find them in primitive times. In considering 
the second view, to which it is now time to turn, 
we shall adopt a different course. We shall first 
collect the main facts which can be discovered 
or deduced respecting vestments in the earliest 
centuries of Christianity, from the beginning till 
the rupture of the East and the West, and then 
discuss in detail the vestments as we find them in 
the succeeding period, which in all ecclesiastical 
matters was a period of transition, comparing each 
in turn with its hypothetical prototype among the 
civil costume of the Romans. The remainder of 
the present and the whole of the succeeding chapter 
will be devoted to this investigation. 

The materials available for an inquiry into the 
vestment usage of the early Church are twofold : 
the incidental statements of contemporary authors, 
and the more direct information obtained from a 

* Such a vestment as the talith is not here considered, for 
this is worn by all the worshippers alike, as well as hj the 
officiating minister. 

^Khe Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 1 5 

study of contemporary paintings and sculpture. 
We shall now discuss the results which follow 
from an examination of these sources. 

The references in the earliest writers — even 
including those which have a very indirect bearing 
on the subject — are extremely few in number ; 
and all passages which can possibly throw any 
light on the question have been eagerly sought 
out and called into evidence to support one theory 
or another. The two best-known passages are the 
statement of St Jerome : * Holy worship hath one 
habiit in the ministry, another in general use and 
common life ' ;* and the yet more famous passage 
in the liturgy of St Clement, in which a rubric 
directs the priest to begin the service * girded with 
a shining vesture.'j" The phrase Xa^Trpai^ eaOioTa 
/iierev^vQ has been translated * being girded with 
his " splendid " vestment,' a translation which the 
Greek cannot possibly bear ; and this passage, 
coupled with the excerpt from Jerome just quoted, 
have been brought forward to testify that gorgeous 
vestments were in use even at the early times when 
thos;e documents from which they have been ex- 
tracted were written. 

"'•' Hieron. In Ezek., cap. xliv. * Religio divina alterum 
habitum habet in ministerio alterum in usu vitaque communi.' 

t Et'^a/xei/09 ovv KaO^ eavrov 6 dpxt^^p^vs a/xa rots UpevaLV 
Kal \afM77pav i(Tdy]Ta fierevSvs Kal crras Trpbs T(^ dvcnacrTrjpLOi 
TO TooiraLOv rod crravpov Kara tov parioTTOv tov X^tpl Troirja-d- 

fl€VO<i; ClTTaTO) K,T.\. 

1 6 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Mr. Marriott has carefully examined and gom- 
mented on these and the other passages cited as 
authorities. He proves that the first passage given 
above is used in a context which shows that 
Jerome, though possibly he may have had Christian 
usage in his mind, was thinking primarily of Jewish 
usage ; the second (which not improbably is an 
interpolation) does not specify a * splendid ' vesture, 
but a ' white ' or ' shining ' garment. 

Mr. Marriott's inference from these and similar 
passages is ' that white was the colour appropriated 
in primitive times [i.e., in the first four centuries] 
to the dress of the Christian ministry.' Though 
this view is preferable to the theory that the 
primitive vestments were of the same elaborate 
description as their mediaeval successors, yet it does 
not altogether commend itself as following naturally 
from the authorities cited. It will be necessai y to 
review these passages, for, as we shall endeavour 
to show, they are quite consistent with the third 
alternative : that no distinctive vestments were set 
apart for the exclusive use of the Christian minister 
during the first four centuries of the Christian era. 

The third passage is also from Jerome. In 
another part of the same commentary as the last 
he writes : ' From all these things we learn that 
we ought not enter the Holy of Holies clad in our 
everyday garments and in whatever clothes we 
will, defiled as they are by the usage of common 

77?^ Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments, ly 

life ; but with pure conscience and in pure garments 
we ought to hold the sacraments of the Lord.'* 

The fourth passage is from Jerome's letter 
against the Pelagians, in which occur these re- 
markable words : * You say, further, that gor- 
geousness of apparel or ornament is offensive to 
God. But, I ask, suppose I should wear a comelier 
tunic, wherein would it offend God ? or if bishop, 
priest, deacon, and the rest of the church officers 
were to come forward dressed in white V'\ 

Only one other passage remains. This is the 
account of the charge preferred against Cyril, 
Bishop of Jerusalem, before the Emperor Con- 
stantius. It is narrated in Theodoret (Eccl. 
Hist., ii 27), and, not being worth quoting at 
length, may be briefly stated thus : Constantine 
had sent to Macarius, the then bishop, a sacred 
robe — Uciav aroXw — made of threads of gold, to be 
worn when administering baptism ; Cyril had sold 
this robe to a stage-dancer, who wore it during a 

* ' Per quae discimus non quotldianis et quibuslibet pro 
usu vitae communis pollutis vestibus nos ingredi debere in 
sancta sanctorum sed munda conscientia et mundis vestibus 
tcnere Domini sacramenta.' — Hieron. in Ezek., cap. xliv. 

f 'Adjungis gloriam vestium et ornamentorum Deo esse 
contraiiam. Quae sunt rogo inimicitiae contra Deum si 
tunicam habuero mundiorem ? si episcopus presbyter et 
diaconus et reliquus ordo ecclesiasticus in administratione 
sacrificiorum Candida veste processerint ?' — Hieron., Adv. 
Pelagianos, lib, i, cap. 9. 


1 8 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

public exhibition. It was further stated that the 
stage-dancer had fallen while dancing and been 
fatally injured. 

As the reader will see, these passages give but 
few data for deductions as to the vestment-usage 
in the early Church. There is no indication, for 
instance, in the passage from Theodoret of what 
sort the sacred robe in question was : it may just 
as well have been a splendid garment originally 
from some temple or other. The fact that the 
early Greek ecclesiastical writers do not use the 
word GToXi] to denote a sacred vestment further 
weakens the force of this anecdote as an argument. 
Only Germanus, Patriarch of Constantinople (early 
seventh century), supplies another instance, where 
he says : i] aroXri tov lepetjQ . . . Kara rov no^rj^r] 
AapCjv ; and this latter passage can be explained 
away, as 0-70X77 refers here to Jewish vesture, in 
which connection it is also employed by the 

On a careful and unbiased reading of these 
passages, it will be noticed that nothing is said 
which can be construed into denoting garments of 
a special prescribed shape, and that their colour is 
only specified by such indefinite words as Xafnrpoq 
and Candidas. 

It is also important to notice that although in 
the first and third of the passages cited from 
Jerome a more special mention is made of the 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments, 1 9 

dress of the clergy, yet it is not straining the 
meaning of either of them to regard them as 
applying equally well to the dress of the lay 
worshippers. This, of course, would preclude the 
supposition that they deal with any special ritual 
observance. The second of these quotations, if 
translated into homely nineteenth-century language, 
resolves itself into a simple but strong injunction 
to all worshippers (not the minister only) to wear 
their Sunday clothes. Mr Marriott lays great 
stress on the passage in the letter against Pelagius ; 
its testimony is one of the strongest arguments 
which he can bring forward to support his thesis, 
that it was specially appointed, in the primitive 
church, that white vestments (something like the 
modern surplice) should be worn by the minister. 
But Jerome does not say, * Is God displeased 
because the officers of the church dressed Candida 
veste ?' but ' would God be displeased if they 
were so vested.^' The entire passage is hypo- 
thetical ; and nothing is more clear than that 
Jerome was not contemplating any hard and fast 

We may dismiss the passage from the Clemen- 
tine Liturgy with very few words. Aa^irpog^ 
which the ritualists translate ' splendid,' in classical 
Greek always means ' bright, brilliant, radiant,'* and 

* See Liddell and Scott, Greek Lexicon, edit, maj., sub 

20 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

is applied in Homer to the sun and stars. It is also 
applied, in the sense of ' bright,' to white clothes ; 
indeed, we find in Polybius^ {flor, circa 150 B.C.) 
this very phrase, Xajnirpa kaQiK, equivalent to the 
Roman /^^<^ Candida. Other meanings are *limpid' 
(of water), ' sonorous ' (of the voice), ' fresh, 
vigorous ' (of action), * manifest,' ' illustrious,' 
'munificent,' * joyous,' 'splendid' (generally, in 
outward appearance, health, dress, language, etc.); 
but it never wears the definite meaning which we 
should expect were the word intended to be 
applied to a definite vesture. The Xa^iTrpa kM^q 
of the Clementine Liturgy is, in short, a bright, 
clean robe, but no more an article of an ex- 
clusively ecclesiastical nature than is the ' fair 
white linen cloth ' with which the rubric of the 
Anglican Communion Service directs the altar to 
be covered. 

Another passage, somewhat later in date, may be 
cited as a type of a large class of passages very apt 
to mislead too credulous students. It is the 
Gaulish description of St Berignus cited by Lipo- 
manus (de Vitis Sancton, Ed. Surius, Venice, 
1 58 1, vol. vi, p. 4), ' Vidi quendam hominem 
peregrinum, capite tonso, cujus habitus differt ab 
habitu nostro, vitaque eius nostrae dissimilis est.' 
The context, however, makes it plain that secular, 
not religious, dress is intended. 

* Polyb., 10, 5, I. 

The Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 21 

And when we refer to the few early frescoes 
and mosaics which have come down to us from 
the primitive epoch, we find ecclesiastics, apostles, 
and Our Lord Himself, represented as habited in 
the tunic and toga or pallium of Roman everyday 

We gather, therefore, from these scattered shreds 
of evidence that, during the first centuries of the 
Christian church, no vestments were definitely 
set apart for the exclusive use of the clergy 
who officiated at Divine service : that clergy and 
people wore the same style of vesture both in 
church and out, subject only to the accidental dis- 
tinctions of quality and cleanliness. 

Fashion in dress or ornament is subject to 
constant changes which, though perhaps individu- 
ally trifling, in time amount to complete revolu- 
tions ; but the devotees of any religion, true or 
false, are by nature conservative of its doctrines 
or observances. Combined with the conclusions 
at which we have just arrived, these two universally 
recognised statements yield us presumptive evidence 
of the truth of the theory which views the Roman 
civil dress as the true progenitor of mediaeval 
ecclesiastical costume. We have seen that at 
first the worshippers wore the same costume 
both at worship and at home. Fashion would 
slowly change unchecked from year to year, 
while ecclesiastical conservatism would retard 

22 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

such changes so far as they concerned the dress 
worn at Divine service : small differences would 
spring into existence between everyday dress 
and the dress of the worshipper, and these differ- 
ences, at first hardly perceptible, would increase 
as the process went on, till the two styles of 
costume became sharply distinguished from one 

Parallel cases are not wanting to show that this 
is not altogether mere random theorizing. For 
example, the ministers of the Reformed Church of 
Holland maintained, till comparatively recently, a 
picturesque fashion of dress over a century old, 
which they wore only when conducting Divine 
service.^ Perhaps, however, the objection may 
be urged against this view of the case, that if the 
process were such as we have described, it should 
apply as weJl to the worshippers as to the minister : 
that they, as well as he, should wear service-robes. 
It is possible that this would actually have been 
the case had the church services maintained their 
most primitive form, as St Paul describes it in the 
First Epistle to the Corinthians : ' When ye come 
together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a 
doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath 
an interpretation ' ; f that is, had all the wor- 
shippers maintained an equally prominent position 

* See Chapter VI. 
t I Cor. xiv 26. 

T^he Genesis of Ecclesiastical Vestments. 23 

instead of selecting one of their number to con- 
duct their services. At it was, the outstanding 
position of the minister rendered his equipment 
especially liable to such stereotyping as we have 

In the following chapter we shall submit the 
truth of this theory to a test. If the genesis of 
ecclesiastical vestments actually took place in some 
such manner as this, then the vestments as we 
find them described in the earliest writers ought to 
bear conspicuous points of resemblance to the civil 
costume of the Roman people during the first three 
Christian centuries. We shall now inquire whether 
this be so. 



THE last chapter has carried us down to 
the end of the fourth century a. d. For 
some time back the Roman Empire had 
been showing signs of disintegration. Already 
the three sons of Constantine had divided the 
imperial power among themselves ; but the rule 
thus severed had again been united in the person 
of Constantius. In 395, however, the emperor 
Theodosius died, and left the empire of the world 
to be parted between his two sons, Arcadius and 

It would be outside our scope to enter into the 
details of the far-reaching consequences of this 
great event. For our present purpose it is suf- 
ficient to state that, with the empire in which it 
had been born and nurtured, the church was 
divided into two parts, which were thenceforth to 

Early Development of Vestments, 25 

develop independently, now in parallel, now in 
widely divergent lines. 

It will be convenient to regard the first chapter 
as dealing with the period between the institution 
of Christianity and the partition of the Roman 
Empire ; and in the present chapter to discuss the 
interval between the latter event and the accession 
of Charles the Great. We thereby divide the 
history into two epochs of approximately four 
centuries each, with characteristics sufficiently well 
marked to distinguish one from the other. 
Following Marriott, we shall name the first the 
primitive, the second the transitional period. We 
have seen that there is no evidence that vestments 
of any definite form were prescribed for use during 
the former epoch ; we shall see in the present 
chapter how vestment-usage rapidly developed in 
the churches of the West till it culminated in the 
gorgeous enrichment of medieval times. 

Although the difi-erences between the vestments 
of the Western and the Eastern churches consist 
largely in matters of detail, they are sufficiently 
conspicuous, and their histories are sufficiently 
divergent, to render their independent treatment 
advisable. We shall therefore postpone the dis- 
cussion of the latter till we have investigated the 
evolution and subsequent elaboration of the 

The empire to which Honorius succeeded con- 

26 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

sisted of Italy, Spain, Gaul, and Britain. Although 
the evidence which is extant does not permit us to 
trace completely the history of vestments through- 
out this period, yet from scattered documents we 
are able to see that for the most part the develop- 
ment of ecclesiastical costume proceeded on the 
same lines throughout this vast area. 

Ritual in matters of dress had rapidly been 
growing. Pope Celestine, who occupied the Roman 
See from 423 till 432, found it necessary to write 
a sharp letter to the Bishops of Vienne and Nar- 
bonne for * devoting themselves rather to super- 
stitious observances in dress than to purity of 
heart and faith.' Certain monks, it appears, had 
attained to episcopal rank, but had retained their 
ascetic costume. Some of Celestine's sentences are 
very striking in this connection ; and although 
they refer primarily to out-door costume, we 
cannot but think that, in a later age, when the 
regulations governing the ritual uses of vestments 
had been formulated, and the vestments themselves 
had been elaborated to their ultimate form, the 
force of his words would have been somewhat 
modified. 'By dressing in a cloak [pallium'],' he 
says, * and by girding themselves with a girdle, 
they think to fulfil the truth of Scripture, not in 
the spirit, but in the letter. For if these precepts 
were given to the end that they should be obeyed 
in this wise, why do they not likewise that which 

T^he Early Develop?nent of Vestments. 27 

follows, and carry burning lights in their hands 
as well as their pastoral staves ? We should be 
distinguished from the common people, or from 
all others, by our learning, not by our dress ; by 
our habit of life, not by our clothing ; by the 
purity of our minds, not by the cut of our 
garments. For if we begin to introduce novelties, 
we shall trample under foot the usage which our 
fathers have handed down to us, and give place to 
vain superstitions/ 

The fullest information on the subject of vest- 
ments during this period comes from Spain, in the 
oft-quoted acts of the fourth council of Toledo, 
which sat under the presidency of St Isidore of 
Seville in the year G^Z- Of the canons which 
were drawn up at this council that which is of the 
highest importance in this inquiry is the twenty- 
eighth, although it is not directly connected with 
vestment-usage. It provides for the case of a 
cleric who had been unjustly degraded from his 
order, and ordains that such a one, if he be found 
innocent in a subsequent synod, ' cannot be rein- 
stated in his former position unless he regain his 
lost dignities before the altar, at the hands of a 
bishop. If he be a bishop, he must receive the 
ovarium,^ ring, and staff; if a priest, the orarium 

* Throughout this chapter I have retained the Latin 
words orariu7n, planeta and alba in preference to the English 
translations 'stole,' 'chasuble,' and 'alb,' when treating of 

28 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

and planeta ; if a deacon, the ovarium and alba ; 
if a subdeacon, the paten and chaHce, and similarly 
for the other orders — they must receive, on their 
restoration, whatever they received on their ordi- 

On the principle which is all but universal, that 
the clergy of the higher orders added the insignia 
of the lower orders to those of their own, we are 
enabled by the help of this act to draw up a table 
of the vestments recognised in Spain, which shows 
at a glance the manner in which they were dis- 
tributed among the different orders of clergy : 

^/i?a : worn by all alike. 

Orarium : worn by deacons, priests, and bishops. 

Planeta : worn by priests and bishops. 

Ring and staff : exclusively for bishops. 

Some letters of Gregory the Great (Bishop of 
Rome 590-604) give us particulars relating to 

the vestments of the early church. The two are not iden- 
tical, and it is convenient to have a short method of distin- 
guishing one from the other. 

* * Episcopus presbyter aut diaconus si a gradu suo iniuste 
delectus in secunda synodo innocens reperiatur non potest 
esse quod fuerat nisi gradus amissos recipiat coram altario de 
manu episcopi ; (si episcopus) orarium annulum et baculum ; 
si presbyter orarium ct planetam ; si diaconus orarium et 
albam ; si subdiaconus patenam et calicem ; sic et reliqui 
gradus ea in reparationem sui recipiant quae cum ordinarentur 
perceperunt.' [The bracketed words have dropped out from 
the MS., but their restoration is certain and necessary.] 

The Early Development of Vestrnents. 29 

three other vestments not in general use through- 
out the church. These are the dalmatica, the 
7nappula, and the pallium. Lastly, an anonymous 
MS. of uncertain date* enumerates the pallium, 
casula, manualia^ vestimentwm, alba, and stola 
as the vestments worn in the Gallican Church. 
It is to be regretted that none of the British 
authors of the period have preserved any record 
of contemporary vestment -usage in this country; 
we have, however, no reason to suppose that it 
differed from that of the Continent. 

Let us now take each of the above vestments in 
order, and collect whatever information is obtain- 
able upon their appearance and history, comparing 
each in turn with its supposed Roman prototype. 

I. The Alba. — This word is the abbreviated 
form of the full name, tunica alba, by which a 
flowing tunic of white linen was denoted. It 
appears that the first use of this word as a 
technical term for a special robe is in a passage 
of Trebellius Pollio (in Claud., xiv, xvii), who 

* This MS. is edited in Martene's Thesaurus Anec- 
dotorum, vol. v, p. 86 et seq., and extracts are made from it 
in Marriott's work, p. 204. The MS. was found in the 
monastery of St Martin at Autun, and is assigned by Mar- 
tene to the sixth century, though on doubtful grounds. 
Marriott is probably correct in referring it to the tenth. 
As the vestments which it describes rather resemble those of 
the final period than of the transitional, we reserve its dis- 
cussion till the following chapter. 

30 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

speaks of an alha suhserica^ mentioned in a letter 
sent from Valerian to Zosimio, Procurator of Syria, 
about 260-270 A.D. In the 41st canon of the 
fourth council of Carthage {circa 400 a.d.)* we 
meet with the first use of this word in an ecclesi- 
astical connection, in one of the earliest (if not 
the earliest) regulations ever passed to govern the 
ritual usage of vestments. This ordains that the 
deacon shall wear an alha only ^tempore ohla- 
tionis tantum vel lectionis' 

The constant evidence of contemporary pictures 
indicates that the alha was a long, full, and flowing 
vesture. In this respect it differed from the Mosaic 
tunic, on the one hand, and the mediaeval alb on 
the other. Both these vestments fitted closely to 
the body for reasons of convenience, for a flowing 
tunic would obviously hamper the Levitical priest 
in the discharge of his sacrificial duties, and would 
not sit comfortably under the vestments with 
which it was overlaid in mediaeval times. 

Nearly two centuries after the fourth council 
of Carthage we find the first council of Narbonne 
(a.d. 589) enacting that * neither deacon nor sub- 
deacon, nor yet the lector, shall presume to put 
off his alba till after mass is over.'f To this 

* Labbe, Sacrosancta Concilia (1671), vol. ii, col. 1203. 

t * Nee diaconus aut subdiaconus certe vel lector ante- 
quam missa consummetur alba se prassumat exuere.' — Concil. 
Narb., i, Labbe, vol. v, col. 1030 (misprinted 1020). 

The Early Development of Vestments, 3 

canon, which was clearly framed to check some 
tendency to irregularity that had become notice- 
able in the celebration of mass, we are indebted 
for two facts : first, that ritual usage in vestments 
was now firmly established ; and second, that the 
alba was the dress of the minor orders of clergy. 
This latter point is not clearly brought out in the 
Toletan canon already quoted. 

Of the garments worn in everyday life by the 
Roman citizen, the innermost was the tunica talaris, 
or long tunic. This article of dress was white, 
usually of wool ; it was passed over the head and 
reached to the feet, the epithet talaris (' reaching 
to the ankles') being employed to distinguish it, as 
the tunic of ceremony, from the short tunics worn 
when freedom was required for active exertion.'"'^ 
It fitted tolerably closely to the body, though it 
was sufficiently loose to require a girdle to confine 
it. The tunics of senators and equites were dis- 
tinguished by two bands of purple, in the former 
case broad {lati clavi), in the latter narrow {angusti 
clavi), which passed from the sides of the aperture 
for the head down to the lower hem of the 

A comparison of the ecclesiastical tunica alba 
with the civil tunica talaris will bring out some 
remarkable points of resemblance. Both were 

* It was also possible and usual to gird up the tunica talaris 
for this purpose. 

32 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

worn in the same manner, and both reached to the 
feet ; it is true that the ecclesiastical dress was 
slightly fuller than the civil, but this was necessary, 
as room was required underneath the alba for the 
wearer's everyday dress. Further, we find ecclesi- 
astics represented in ancient frescoes wearing albae 
which actually show ornaments disposed like the 
clavi of the tunica talaris. These clavi were early 
employed by the Christians to distinguish, by their 
relative width, the representations of Our Lord from 
those of the Apostles, or to discriminate between 
the figures of ecclesiastics of different orders. 

It is also important to notice that the alba is 
invariably furnished with tight sleeves reaching to 
the wrist. The tunic was originally a sleeveless 
garment ; but with the growth of luxury, a new 
kind provided with sleeves gradually came into 
favour. These two forms of tunic were distin- 
guished by different names : the older or sleeveless 
tunic was called colobium^ a Latinization of the 
Greek name /coXojSioi/ ;* and the latter or sleeved 
tunic was named tunica manicata or tunica dalmatica^ 
from the name of the province to which its inven- 
tion was ascribed. 

In the early days of Rome the use of a tunica 
dalmatica stamped the wearer with the stigma of 
effeminacy and utter want of self-respect. The 

''' Derived from the adjective ko\o/36s, docked, curtailed, in 
reference to the shortened sleeves of the garment. 

T^he Early Development of Vestments. 33 

parents of Cornelius Scipio and of Fabius are said 
to have openly disgraced them in their boyhood, 
as a punishment ad corrigendos mores, by com- 
pelling them to appear in public in this attire. 
The despicable emperors Commodus and Elaga- 
balus offended all persons of good taste by coming 
out before all the people in the same costume : 
the latter impudently calling himself another 
Scipio or Fabius, in reference to the incident just 
related.* This, however, cannot mean that the 
scandal lay in the adoption of the luxurious tunica 
dalmatica in preference to the colohium (for Rome 
in the time of Elagabalus was too deeply steeped 
in luxury and vice to feel shocked at an Emperor 
merely preferring an under-garment with sleeves 
to one without those appendages) ; it rather con- 
sisted in his neglecting to put on his 'pallium, or 
outer dress, over it. In fact, the tunica dalmatica 
must have quite ousted its severer rival in popular 
favour by the time of Elagabalus : for we find that 
in 258, only thirty-six years after the death of that 
emperor, St Cyprian of Carthage wore a tunica 
dalmatica, over which was a hyrrhus, or cloak, 
when led out to martyrdom. f It is absurd to 
suppose that Cyprian, on such a solemn occasion, 

* Lampridius in Commodo, cap. viii ; in Elagab., cap. 

t Acta S Cyp., prop. Jin. (Migne, Patrologia, vol. iii, 
col. 1504). 


34 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

would have assumed a merely luxurious garment, 
and equally absurd to imagine that he would have 
worn ecclesiastical vestments at the time, as some 
commentators on the passage have held. There 
remains only one other alternative — that the 
tunica dalmatic a was the form of tunic which was 
in regular use at the time, and this seems quite 
the most satisfactory hypothesis. 

The most important mention of the tunica 
dalmatica in connection with ecclesiastical matters 
is in the decree of Sylvester, Bishop of Rome, 
253-257. That prelate ordained 'that deacons 
should use the dalmatica in the church, and that 
their left hands should be covered with a cloth 
of mingled wool and linen.'* Various authors 
supplement this passage ; thus, the anonymous 
author of the tract ' De Divinis Officiis,' formerly 
attributed to Alcuin, tells us that * the use of 
dalmaticae was instituted by Pope Sylvester, for 
previously colohia had been worn.'f 

Much importance has been attached to this 
decree. It is regarded as an additional and in- 
controvertible proof that ecclesiastical vestments 

* * Ut diaconi Dalmatica uterentur in ecclesia et pallio 
linostimo laeva eorum tegeretur.' — Anastasius Bibliothecarius 
de Vit. Pontif., § 35 (S Sylv.) ; Migne, Patrol., vol. cxxvii, 


t ' Usus autem Dalmaticarum a B. Sylvestro Papa insti- 
tutus est: nam antea colobiis utebantur.' — Pseudo-Alcuin 
de Div. Off., cap. xxxix ; Migne, vol. ci, 1243. 

The Early Development of Vestments, 35 

were in use in the primitive church. But on 
examination, however, it will be found no more 
to bear such a construction than St Paul's request 
for his f^aiKovx). The ordinance merely shows that 
Sylvester had a laudable desire to improve the 
aesthetics of public worship, and, with this end 
in view, decreed that thenceforward ecclesiastics 
should all wear the tunica dalmatica — which had 
quite outgrown its early evil reputation, and 
must be admitted to have been a better-lookino- 
garment than the scanty and somewhat undigni- 
fied colobium. It is not at all improbable that 
many of the clergy wore dalmaticae even before 
Sylvester's edict : in this case the edict would 
have the additional advantage of securing uni- 

All attempts to set up the dalmatica as a 
separate vestment in early times fail hopelessly. 
It is unknown to the drafters of the Toletan 
canons, and no early representation of an ecclesiastic 
is extant having two vestments visible under the 
planeta* This would certainly be the case if the 
two were independent vestments. It is true that 
St Isidore of Seville wrote, ' Dalmatica vestis 
primum in Dalmatia provincia Graecia texta est 
sacerdotalis, Candida cum clavis ex purpura ;'t 
(the dalmatica is a priestly vestment first made in 

* This does not apply to the city of Rome. See p. 54. 
t Etymologiae, lib. xix, cap. xxii (Migne, Ixxxii 635). 

36 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

Dalmatia, a province of Greece, white with purple 
clavi) ; but the concluding words show that he 
was merely thinking of the alba under its more 
specific name, dalmatic a, 

A brief recapitulation of this somewhat lengthy 
argument may not be out of place. Two forms 
of tunic may be said to have contended one with 
another for the favour of the Roman people — the 
sleeveless colobium and the sleeved dalmatica. The 
latter ultimately gained the victory ; and the 
decree of Pope Sylvester, commanding all eccle- 
siastics under his authority to assume it in place 
of the former, finally established its use in the 
church. Now, when we find that, two or three 
centuries after Sylvester's time, a vestment was 
worn by ecclesiastics in Divine service identical 
with the tunica dalmatica in almost every respect, 
even to the presence of the clavi^ which (in the 
secular dress) indicated the rank of the wearer, it 
is only natural to regard the one as directly derived 
from the other. 

There is one other point of importance in the 
history of this vestment in the transitional period. 
It was found that such a flowing garment as the 
alba seriously incommoded the priest on some 
occasions, particularly in administering baptism by 
immersion. Accordingly, an alba fitting closely 
to the body was invented for use on such occasions, 
and is represented in certain MS. illuminations, 

T^he Early Development of Vestments, i^j 

particularly a ninth-century pontifical now in the 
St Minerva Library at Rome. The special im- 
portance of this point is due to the fact that this 
baptismal alba was probably the immediate parent 
of the mediaeval alb ; the closer vestment being 
found more convenient on other occasions as well 
as that of baptism, and having gradually become 

Fig. 2.— a Bishop administering Baptism. 

adopted in all the other offices of the Church as 

II. The 07'arium. — Both this vestment and the 
name by which it was known have given much 
trouble to scholars. The following list of the 
various derivations which have been suggested for 
the word orarium (arranged in order of probability) 
is not uninteresting : 

38 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

1. Ora, because used to wipe the face. 

2. Orare, because used in prayer. 

3. wpa, because it indicated the time of the different parts 

of the service. 

4. iopaL^€Lv, because the deacon was beautified with it. 

5. Ora (a coast), because (alleged to have been) originally 

the edging of a lost garment. 

6. 6/)a(o, because the siglt of it indicated whether a priest 

or deacon was ministering (!). 

There can be little doubt that the first is the 
true etymology. The others are all more or less 
fanciful ; and the orarium was certainly employed 
originally as a scarf Ambrose speaks of the face 
of the dead Lazarus being bound with an orarium; 
and Augustine uses the same word to indicate a 
bandage employed to tie up a wounded eye. 

Numerous effigies of late date are extant which 
exhibit a kind of scarf, passing over the left 
shoulder diagonally downwards to the right side, 
and fastened under the right arm. As Albertus 
Rubenius long ago pointed out, these scarves must 
not be confused with the clavi which ornamented 
the tunics of senators and equites ; for they are 
worn over the pallium^ or outer garment, and are 
disposed in a manner quite different from that in 
which the clavi fall. 

What, then, are these scarves } The answer to 
this question is supplied by Flavius Vopiscus in his 
Life of Aurelian, who, he says, ' was the first to 
grant oraria to the Roman people, to be worn as 

'The Early Development of Vestments. 39 

favours/"^ Now, the references which we have 
just made to Ambrose and Augustine — not to 
mention others which might equally well be 
quoted — show that the oraria, whatever may have 
been the method in which they were worn, must 
have been narrow strips of some kind of cloth. 
These peculiar scarves, which are to be seen on 
certain monuments, do not appear on any effigy 
dating before the time of Aurelian ; the natural 
inference, therefore, is that the scarves which we 
see thus represented are actually the oraria^ granted 
to the Roman people by that emperor and his 
successors. If this argument be not valid, then it 
is impossible to say either what these scarves really 
are, or what was the true appearance of the civil 

It is probable that considerable laxity existed in 
the manner of wearing the ecclesiastical orarium, 
for the fourth Council of Toledo thought it 
necessary to enact a special canon to regulate the 
method in which this vestment should be disposed. 
The fortieth act of this assembly restricts the 
number of or aria to one, and enjoins that deacons 
should wear the orarium over the left shoulder, 
leaving the right side free so as to facilitate the 

* 'Sciendum . . . ilium . , . primum donasse oraria populo 
Romano quibus uteretur populus ad favorem.' — Flav. Vop. 
in Aur., 48. 

40 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

execution of their duties in Divine service.'"* This 
act also provides that the diaconal ovarium should 
be plain, not ornamented with gold or embroidery. 
It will be noticed that this Toletan council 
favoured the derivation of the word or avium from 
or are. 

The wearing of the ov avium was still flirther 
regulated by two of the councils which met at 
Braga. The second council of Braga (563 a.d.) 
decreed that ' since in some churches of this 
province the deacons wear their ovavia hidden 
under the tunic, so that they cannot be distin- 
guished from the subdeacons, for the future they 
must be placed over their shoulders. 'f The fourth 

"* ' Orariis duobus nee episcopo quidem licet nee presby- 
tero uti ; quanto magis diacono qui minister eorum est. 
Unum igitur orarium oportet Levitam gestare in sinistro 
huraero propter quod orat, id est, praedicat ; dextram autem 
partem oportet habere liberam ut expeditus ad ministerium 
sacerdotale discurrat. Caveat igitur amodo gemino uti orario 
sed uno tantum et puro nee ullis eoloribus aut auro ornato.' — 
Aeta Coneil. Tolet. IV, cap. xl. 

This rule does not seem to have been always obeyed. In 
the Pontifical of Landulfus (ninth century) there is a repre- 
sentation of an ecclesiastic wearing two oraria, one over each 
shoulder. This, however, must be regarded as exceptional. 

t * Item placuit ut quia in aliquantis huius provlnciae 
ecclesiis diacones {sic) absconsis infra tunicam utuntur orariis 
ita ut nihil differre a subdiacono videantur de cetero super- 
posito scapulae (sieut decet) utantur orario.' — Acta Coneil. 
Braear. II, cap. ix : Labbe, vol. v, col. 841. The eleventh 

The Early Development of Vestments. 4 1 

council (675 A.D.) made an important decree 
regulating the wearing of the orarium by priests, 
which has been since followed universally. The 
vestment was to be passed round the neck, over 
each shoulder, crossed in front, and secured in this 
position under the girdle of the alba.^ 

The last enactment of importance is that of 
the council of Mayence (813 a.d.), which ordered 
that priests should wear their oraria 'without 

canon ordained ' ut Icctores in ecclcsia in habitu saeculari 
ornati non psallant.' 

■* *Cum antiqua ecclesiastica noverimus institutione prae- 
fixum ut omnis sacerdos cum ordinatur orario utroque humero 
ambiatur ; scilicet ut qui imperturbatus praecipitur consistere 
inter prospera et adversa, virtutum semper ornamento utro- 
bique circumseptus appareat : qua ratione tempore sacrificii 
non assumat, quod se in sacramento accepisse non dubitatur ? 
Proinde modis omnibus convenit ut quod quisque percepit 
in consecratione, hoc et retentet in oblatione, vel perceptione 
sude salutis ; scilicet ut cum sacerdos ad sollennia missarum 
accedit aut pro se Deo sacrificium oblaturus, aut sacramentum 
corporis et sanguinis Domini Nostri Jesu Christi sumpturus, 
non aliter accedat, quam orario utroque humero circum- 
septus, sicut et tempore ordinationis suae dignoscitur consecra- 
turus : ita ut dc uno eodemque orario cervicem pariter et 
utrumque humerum premens, signum in suo pectore prae- 
ferat crucis. Si quis autem aliter egerit excommunication! 
debitae subiacebit.' — Concil. Bracar. IV, cap. iv : Labbe, 
vol. vi, coll. 564, 565. 

f ' Presbyteri sine intermissione utuntur orariis propter 

42 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

The orarium^ then, was a narrow strip of cloth, 
disposed about the persons of the clergy in various 
manners according to their rank. To it corre- 
sponded in name, shape, and method of disposi- 
tion, a garment common among the Romans, 
though admittedly rather an honourable ornament 
than an actual article of clothing. Yet when we 
remember how the clavi were employed to dis- 
tinguish rank among the earlier clergy, this latter 
fact may be regarded as strengthening the evidence 
of identity which the correspondence in all salient 
features affords. Some other theories of its origin 
will be discussed when we have treated of the 

III. The Planeta. — In the earlier and purer 
days of the Roman people, the dress which alone 
was recognised as the proper costume for the 
citizen was the toga. This was one of the most 
inconvenient and cumbrous articles of dress ever 
invented — a great oblong cloth, fifteen feet by ten, 
thrown in a complicated manner over the left 
shoulder, folded in front, and hanging loose about 
the feet. We can hardly feel surprised at finding 
that, when the citizens came to regard comfort 
before appearances to such an extent as to adopt 
sleeved tunics, a more convenient form of this 

difFerentiam sacerdotis dignitatis.' — Concil. Mogunt. cap. 
xxviii : Labbe, vol. vii, col. 1249. 

The Early Development of Vestments. 43 

outdoor costume was adopted. There were three 
varieties of this new* garment, each of which has 
its own name ; these were the paenula, the casula^ 
and the planeta. 

The paenula was a garment which in the early 
days of the Republic was allotted to slaves. A 
slave wearing this dress is introduced into the 
' Mostellaria ' (IV iii 51) of Plautus. Indeed, 
according to Julius Pollux ('Onomasticon,' vii 61), 
the dramatist Rhinthon, who lived in the fourth 
century b.c, introduced a mention of this garment 
into his ' Iphigeneia in Tauris,' a fact which would 
seem to indicate that the dress was much older 
than his own time, as otherwise his audience 
would be unfavourably impressed by the anachron- 
ism. Numerous allusions in classical Latin authors 
show that it was adopted as a travelling dress 
because of its warmth and comparative con- 
venience ^^ but on no account was it worn within 
the walls of the city. Gradually, however, the use 
of the garment spread, till Alexander Severus 
(222-235 A.D.), as Lampridius tells us, permitted 
elders to wear the paenula within the city in cold 

* Or, to speak more accurately, new adaptation of an old 
garment. The paenula, for instance, had long been worn by 
the lower classes, being cheap and warm. 

t Though it was by no means adapted to active exertion. 
See Cicero, pro Milone, capp. x, xx. 

44 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

weather, though at the same time he forbade 
women to do so except when on a journey.* 

The casula was a poor and inferior variety of 
the paenula^ which, when the latter was promoted 
to be the costume of senators and emperors, suc- 
ceeded it as the garb of the poorer classes. The 
original meaning of the name is * little house ' — 
a diminutive of casa — and there is little evidence 
to guide us as to the exact appearance of the 
garment which it denoted. The name would lead 
us to infer that, like the paeniila, it enveloped the 
entire body ; but it is probable that it was made 
of coarser and cheaper material. The fact that 
it was early adopted as the distinctive dress of 
monks would lead us to this conclusion ; beyond 
this there is no reason for supposing that it differed 
in outline from the paenula. 

Thtplaneta first appears in the fifth century a.d. 
Cassianus (De Habitu Monachorum, i 7) men- 
tions it as a dress whose price prevents its use as 
a monastic habit ; and St Isidore, two centuries 
later, expressly forbids members of religious orders 
to wear it. The planeta must therefore have 
been more costly than the casula^ and, as we find 
it mentioned in the sixth century as the dress of 

■^ * Paenulis intra urbem frigoris causa lit senes uterentur 
permisit, quum id vestimenti genus semper itineranum fuisset 
aut pluviae. Matrones tamen intra urbem paenulis uti vetuit, 
in itinere permisit.' — Lamprid. in Alex. Sev., cap. xxvii. 

T'he Early Development of Vestments. 45 

nobles and of senators, it was probably the most 
expensive of the three. 

The general shape of the garment, as shown in 
Roman paintings or effigies, is that of a cloak 
enveloping the body, sewn in front, and put on 
by being passed over the head, for which a suitable 
aperture was provided. And this shape is identical 
with the outer vestment which we see in early 
representations of clerics. The modification which 
was early adopted, that of making the vestment 
oval in form, so as to lessen the width over the 
shoulders and so to give more freedom to the 
arms, was obviously regulated by convenience. 

Thus we have seen that the three principal 
vestments, as we find them detailed in the earliest 
lists and depicted in the earliest monuments, are 
identical in shape, disposition, and name with the 
Roman civil costume of the second or third 
century of the Christian era. 

Three additional vestments are found enumerated 
in the letters of St Gregory the Great and else- 
where which were not worn universally throughout 
the church, but were either carefully confined to 
the clergy of the city of Rome itself or were in 
the gift, so to speak, of the Pope. These are the 
pallium^ the mappula^ and the dalmatica. 

I. The F allium. — In classical Latin this word 
is used either as the equivalent of toga or in the 
general sense of the English * robe.' It is also 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

used in the earlier ecclesiastical writers of the casula^ 
or coarse outer garment of monks, as in the passage 
from Celestine quoted on p. 26. Yet another use 

Fig. 3. — Ecclesiastics from the Mosaics in S Vitale, 
Ravenna (Sixth Century). 

of the word pallium is found in the expression 
pallium linostimum, which denoted a cloth, the use 
of which was ordained to deacons by Pope 

The 'Early Development of Vestments, 47 

Sylvester, as we shall presently see when discussing 
the maniple. 

The pallimn^ when used by ecclesiastical writers 
in its proper and restricted sense, denotes an orna- 
ment specially appropriated to archbishops. Its 
earliest form is shown in the Ravenna mosaics — 
that of a narrow strip of cloth, passed over the 
left shoulder, looped loosely round the neck, and 
then passed over the left shoulder again, so that 
the two ends hang free, one in front, the other 
behind. This method of disposition seems to 
indicate an identity of origin with the ovarium ; 
indeed, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish 
between these vestments in early representations. 
A desire for symmetry, probably, decided the next 
step in its evolution ; this consisted in bringing 
the free end to the middle and knotting it into 
the lowest point of the loop : this we find 
exemplified in monuments of the eighth, ninth, 
or tenth century. From this the transition to the 
form which became universal in later times was 
easy, and the two are found contemporaneously. 
The final form — which will be more fully de- 
scribed in the third chapter — is that of an oval 
loop with a long tail pendent from its ends, so 
that when the ornament is in position it presents 
the appearance of a capital Y on the front and on 
the back. 

The early history of this vestment is involved 

48 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

in deep obscurity. As already hinted, it is not 
improbably a modification of the ovarium ; but 
there is no evidence, further than general outward 
resemblance, that this is actually the case ; nor is 
there any apparent reason for its appropriation to 
archbishops. The question must remain open till 
further research either reveals the missing links 
in the chain of connection, or elicits some more 
satisfactory solution of the question. 

The idea of Dr Rock, according to which the 
pallium is viewed as ' the true and only representa- 
tion of the Roman toga,' is most unsatisfactory. 
He thinks that the toga, which was folded over 
the left shoulder, under the right arm, over the 
right shoulder, and again over the left shoulder, 
' dwindled down to a mere broad band,' folded 
much the same way ; and that this broad band 
was the early pallium. The evolution here sup- 
posed is, however, most unnatural ; there is not 
time for it to have taken place between the in- 
stitution of Christianity and the date of the 
Ravenna mosaics — much less between the time 
when ecclesiastical vestments and their develop- 
ment began to receive special attention and the 
latter date ; the toga, as we have already seen, 
was itself practically obsolete when Christianity 
began to make itself felt, and still further removed 
from the current fashion of the time at which 
archbishops began to require distinguishing in- 

The Early Development of Vestments. 49 

signia; and, lastly, the connecting links between 
the blanket at one end and the narrow strip of 
cloth at the other, which Dr Rock adduces and 
figures, are too few in number to be convincing, 
and quite explicable on other grounds, such as the 
unskilfulness of the ancient 
artist — a fruitful source of 
error in archaeological re- 

It is not inconceivable 
that the origin of the 
honourable -pallium is to be 
sought in the honourable 
orariuyn, distributed as 
' favours ' to the Roman 
people ; in which case we 
must seek elsewhere for a 
prototype to the ecclesias- 
tical ovarium, * We should 
then fall back on the old 
idea, which has by no means 
been disproved, that in the 
clavi of the tunica alba is to ^'^'- 4.-Effigy of a Roman 

Citizen in Caerleon 
be found the true original. Museum. 

We reproduce here a figure of an efHgy of a 
Roman citizen at Caerleon, near Newport, which 
certainly seems to warrant this view ; here is to be 
seen a tunica, a clavus, and.'a paenula, all very sug- 


50 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

gestive of the alb, stole, and chasuble of later times. 
Duchesne, in his * Origines du culte chretien,'* 
regards all the orarium-Y\^t vestments which appear 
in contemporary documents as in reality pallia; 
the ovarium proper he does not consider to have 
been introduced till the tenth century. The 
ovarium which appears before this date he regards 
as simply a napkin, or sudarium^ designed to 
protect the alha. He further states that in the 
fourth century the civil law required all officials 
to wear some distinctive badge of office ; that the 
Eastern Church complied with this law throughout, 
assigning the <l)ino(f)opiov, kiriTpayriXiov^ and wpapiov 
respectively to bishop, priest, and deacon, while 
the Western Church only complied with it to the 
extent of assigning a pallium to the bishops. We 
confess that this elaborate argument does not appeal 
to us any more than the theory which regards 
the stole as the orphrey of a degenerated vestment ; 
but while professing our own belief in Marriott's 
view, stated above (pp. 38-9), we have given these 
several theories, leaving it to the reader to make 
his own choice. 

From the earliest references to the pallium 
which we can find, it is clear that it was from the 
first regarded as a distinctive vestment to be worn 

* Quoted by the Rev O. J. Reichel in his ' English 
Liturgical Vestments in the Thirteenth Century ' (London, 
Hodges, 1895). 

The Early Development of Vestments. 5 1 

by archbishops only.* The archbishops of this 
early period had not the right, any more than their 
mediaeval successors, of assuming the f allium on 
their consecration ; it was necessary to apply to 
the Pope for a grant of the vestment, which was 
only bestowed on the permission of the reigning 
sovereign being obtained. The earliest document 
unquestionably relating to the bestowal of the 
f allium is a letter of Pope Symmachus, bestowing 
the pallium on Theodore, Archbishop of Laureacus, 
in Pannonia, 514 A.D.f Instances of the royal 
assent being considered necessary are found in the 
letters of Pope Vigilius, who delayed the grant of 
the f allium to Archbishop Auxanius of Aries for 
two years, -pending the consent of Childebert I, 
King of the Franks ;J and in the letters of Pope 
Gregory the Great, who at the request of Childe- 
bert II bestowed the pallium on Virgilius, a later 
Archbishop of the same province.^ 

In 866 Pope Nicholas I declared that no arch- 
bishop might be enthroned or might consecrate the 
Eucharist till he should receive the pallium at the 
hands of the Pope.|| 

* Some exceptions to this rule will be noticed in the next 

t Symmachi Ep. xii in ' Patrologia,' Ixii 72. 

X Vigilii Epp. vi, vii in ' Patrologia,' Ixix 26, 27. 

§ Gregorii Ep. v 53 ; * Patrologia,' Ixvii 783. 

II ' . . . . sane interim in throno non sedentem et praeter 
corpus Christi non consecrantem priusquam pallium a sede 


Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

II. The Mappilii. — We have seen in discussing 
the j//'j that Pope Sylvester, in the middle of the 
third century, decreed that the deacons of the 
city of Rome should substitute dalmaticae for 
colobia ; he further charged them to wear a 
gallium Unostimum on their hands. It is clear 
that this cloth, as its proper name, mappiiki (little 
napkin), demonstrates, was designed to serve the 
utilitarian purpose of a handkerchief, either to 
wipe the Communion vessels or the face of the 
minister — probably the latter.* This cloth, 
however, must early have become regarded as 
a sacred vestment by its wearers, and the ex- 
clusive privilecre of the Roman priests to wear 
it was jealously guarded. Attempts were made 
bv the deacons of the neighbouring churches of 
Ravenna to assume the vestment, and St Gregory 
found it necessary to interfere, w^hich he did in 

Romana percipiar, sicuti Galliarum omnes et Germaniae et 
aliarum regionum Archiepiscopi agere comprobantur.' — 
Nich. Papae I, Responsa ad consulta Bulgar., cap. Ixxiii, 
ad fin. : Labbe, vol. viii, col. 542. 

* The notion prevalent nowadays, that the mappula was 
exclusively intended to cleanse the sacred vessels, is thus 
bluntly negatived by St- Ivo of Chartres : ' Unde in sinistra 
manu ponitur quaedam mappula quae saepe fluentem oculorum 
pituitam tergat et oculorum lippitridinem removeat,' And 
Amalarius of Metz testifies to the same effect : ' Sudarium 
ad hoc portamus ut eo detergamus sudorem qui fit ex labore 
proprii corporis.' 

The Fjarly Dei:elopment :^/>. 


several letters to that somewhat recalcitant prelate, 
John, the Bishop of Ravenna. For the sake of 
peace, Gregory admitted a compromise whereby 
the principal deacons of Ravenna were allowed 
to wear the coveted ornament ; but the glamour 
of carrying a vestment, however inconvenient,* 
which was theoretically confined to the holy city 
itself, proved too strong a temptation for the 
deacons of other places, while the Romans (whose 
exclusive privilege was gone once Ravenna was 
admitted to a share in it) took no further steps 
to prevent its assumption. As a natural conse- 
quence, the use of the vestment spread over the 
whole of the Western Church, and by the time 
when the period at present engaging our attention 
ended, had become universal. 

III. The 'Dalmatica. — We have already entered 
at length into the history of this word and of the 
vestment to which it was applied. It does not 
seem to have differed essentially from the alha ; 
but it appears that twoj vestments were worn at 
Rome, an all?a and a dalmatica, though it is 
evident from the Toletan canons and other sources 
that at this early period such was not the case 
elsewhere. In early pictures the two vestments 

* The modifications which the discomfort of this little 
vestment necessitated will be described in the next chapter. 

t Civil dress presented parallel cases : the Emperor 
Augustus wore four tunics in cold weather. 

54 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

are rarely represented side by side ; it is probable 
that the dalmatica was so long as to conceal the 
alba^ just as the dalmatic on mediaeval effigies of 
Bishops often hides the tunicle. It seems, how- 
ever, to have been shown on the ancient picture of 
Gregory the Great, described by Joannes Dia- 
conus ; and we find that Gregory granted its use 
to Bishop Aregius of Gap and to his Archdeacon 
(Ep. ix 107 : Migne, Ixxvii 1033), forwarding 
the vestments at the same time as the letter. 
Clearly the Pope does not denote the alha by the 
word dalmatica^ as we have seen St Isidore of 
Seville do, for Aregius would naturally wear an 
alba without papal interference. The vestment 
in question must, therefore, have been another, 
resembling the alb in outline, but only worn either 
at Rome or by those on whom the Pope saw fit to 
confer it. 

The history of the spread of the dalmatica must 
have been similar to that of the mappula. By the 
time the third period begins we find it established 
as an independent vestment, difi^ering from its 
parent, the alba, in one important respect, which 
will be detailed in the following chapter. 

Although not vestments in the strictest sense of 
the word, we must not conclude this chapter with- 
out a brief notice of the two exclusively episcopal 
insignia noticed in the canons of the fourth council 
of Toledo, namely, the ring and staff. Rings have 

I'he Early Development of Vestments, ^^ 

been found in the tombs of bishops of the third 
century. This, however, proves nothing, as their 
use was universal among both Christians and 
heathen. Nor can anything definitely ecclesiastical 
be tortured out of the many descriptive notices 
which have come down to us of the rings in the 
possession of individual bishops of the third, 
fourth, and fifth centuries. Isidore of Seville 
{circa 600) lands us on firmer ground ; he dis- 
tinctly says : ' To the bishop at his consecration 
is given a staff ... a ring likewise is given him 
to signify pontifical honour, or as a seal for secret 
things.'"' We need not, perhaps, discuss the 
esoteric meaning of the gift as here set forth ; but 
the fact clearly remains that by Isidore's time the 
gift of a ring and a staff had become an essential 
part of the ceremony of episcopal ordination. The 
Toletan canon tells us the same thing. Before 
that time there is no clear indication of the gift ; 
it is not mentioned in ordination services of earlier 
date than the sixth century, one of the oldest 
references to it being in the sacramentary of 
Gregory the Great {circa 590 a.d.) ; and even 
this passage is rejected as an interpolation by 

* Huic dum consecratur datur baculus .... datur et 
annulus propter signum pontificalis honoris vel signaculum 
secretorum. — Isidorus de OfF. EccL, lib. ii, cap. v. 

t Ad annulum digito imponendam : Accipe annulum fidei, 

56 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

The Pastoral Staff, — Isidore says, in the passage 
already quoted, that the staff is given * that he 
may rule or correct those set under him, or support 
the weakness of the weak.'^ 

It is strange that even the pastoral staff has a 
prototype among the insignia of the heathen 
priesthood. One of the emblems of the Roman 
augurs was a lituus, or crook, resembling almost 
exactly the earliest pastoral staves as we find them 
shown in the monuments of early Christian art. 
It was used inter alia for dividing the sky into 
regions for astrological purposes. The pastoral 
staff, as represented in early monuments, was 
much shorter than the mediaeval crozier ; and it 
seems not at all improbable that the pastoral staff 
was originally a ' Christianization ' of this pagan 

Other writers have argued in favour of the 
pastoral staff being simply an adaptation of the 
common walking-sticks, which were certainly used 
in churches as a support before the introduction of 
seats. It has been pointed out, however, that the 
pastoral staff had become a special member of the 
insignia of a bishop bef3re the general abolition of 
these crutches ; and this, it must be confessed, is 

scilicet signaculum quatenus sponsam Dei, videlicet sanctam 
ecclesiam, intemerata fide ornatus illibate custodias. 

''^ Ut subditam plebem vel regat vel corrigat vel infirmi- 
tatem infirmorum sustineat. 

The Early Development of Vestments. 57 

an argument of considerable force against such a 


' The letter of Celestine to the Bishops of Nar- 
bonne and Vienne, part of which we quoted on 
pp. 26-7, is probably about the earliest available 
reference to the use of the pastoral staff by mem- 
bers of the episcopal order. This brings the 
history of pastoral staves back to the early part of 
the fifth century, and shows that this special orna- 
ment was one of the earliest of the external symbols 
which the church has prescribed for its officers. 

The staff was a rod of wood with a head either 
crutched or crooked, usually of one of the precious 
metals. The name sug- 
gests that the symbolism 
of the shepherd had 
entered largely into the 
ideas connected with it. 
It was carried by abbots 
and abbesses, by bishops, 
and, till about the tenth 
century, by the Pope ; 
but with the rapid growth 
of the temporal sove- 
reignty of the Papacy, the 
emblem purely associated 

with the special idea of spiritual pastorate was 
abandoned. In the old pre-scientific days it used 
to be stated that the Pope at no time carried 

Fig. 5.— Pope Gregory the 
Great with Pastoral Staff. 

58 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

2L pastoral staff, though he did bear a ferula^ or 
straight sceptre — the symbol of rule ;* but this is 
at variance with the evidence of contemporary art. 

We must not leave the subject of the earliest 
form of ecclesiastical vestments without briefly 
noticing the ornamentation with which they were 
decorated. In the oldest representations of 
ecclesiastics which we possess, their vestments were 
represented pure white, ornamented with the 
clavi ; these were generally black, though St 
Isidore refers to purple clavi. But other colours 
appear in very early frescoes and mosaics. These, 
however, are apparently arbitrary, the result of 
the notions of the painter on the subject of the 
artistic combination of colours. Nothing analogous 
to the * liturgical colours ' of late times is trace- 
able in the early or transitional period of the 
history of vestments. 

Some ornamentation other than the clavi is 
found in vestments of late date in the present 
period. Leo III, the date of whose Papal rule 
lies just on the border-line between the transi- 
tional and the mediaeval epoch, presented to the 
Church of St Susanna a vestment with four gam- 

* Romanus autem Pontifex Pastorali virga non utitur — 
Innoc. Ill Papa, De Sacr. Altar. Myst. i 62 (Migne ccxvii, 
795). Ideoque summum Pontificem eiusmodi incurvatam 
virgam non gererc quia eius potestas nullis locorum limitibus 
circumscribitur at ubiquepatet. — De Saussay, Panoplia Cleri- 
corum (Paris 1646), p. 102. 

The Early Development of Vestments. 5 9 

madia — that is, ornaments shaped like crosses 
formed by four gammas placed back to back, thus : 
-• ^ ; we also hear of calliculae, metal or em- 
broidered ornaments, for the alba. A singular 
method of ornamentation is exemplified by 
numerous frescoes and mosaics, and has been a 
fruitful source of perplexity to ecclesiologists. 
This consists in the use of letters (sometimes of 
monograms or letter-like arbitrary signs) on the 
outer hem of the garment. No connection can 
be traced between these letters and any circum- 
stances known concerning the persons whose vest- 
ments they decorate ; and wide differences be- 
tween the times and places of individual examples 
of the same character preclude their explanation as 
the faithful copies of weavers' marks. We can 
only say that their use is inexplicable on such 
practical or esoteric grounds, and that, therefore, 
some simple explanation, such as the arbitrary 
selection of a letter as an elementary ornament, is 
the only satisfactory means of accounting for their 
presence. Even now we daily employ rows of 
0-shaped circles, S-shaped curves, etc., as orna- 
ments, without the slightest reference to the 
sounds which those symbols denote. The tendency 
to exalt simple little contrivances into hidden 
mysteries is ever with us, especially in ecclesiology, 
and it should on all occasions be repressed. 



HITHERTO, to a great extent, we have 
been groping in the dark, guided only 
by the dim light yielded by obscure 
passages in early writers or by half-defaced frescoes 
and shattered sculptures. Much is conjectural, 
much uncertain ; and often the shreds of informa- 
tion obtained from different sources appear con- 
tradictory, requiring patient thought and investi- 
gation to unravel the entanglement and reconcile 
the inconsistencies. 

The progress of Christian literature and art had 
been retarded first by persecution, then by war 
and tumult. This partly accounts for the com- 
parative scantiness of the material extant for a 
history of the Christian antiquities of the first 
eight centuries. But with the ninth century a 
new era began, which lasted unchecked all through 

The Final Form of Vestments. 6 1 

the Middle Ages. The military genius of Charles 
the Great effected a general peace in the year 812; 
and under his enthusiastic patronage a true renais- 
sance took place in learning and in art. Archi- 
tecture and manuscript illumination were carried 
to a high degree of perfection, and for the first 
time active and systematic researches were made 
into the details of the doctrine and ritual of the 
church in the preceding centuries. 

As a natural consequence of the inquiring spirit 
which thus made itself felt, the number of books 
and tracts on ecclesiastical matters multiplied 
enormously. Among the many branches of study 
which were and are open to the inquiry of the 
ecclesiologist, few occupied the attention of these 
ninth-century writers more than the vestments 
worn by the priests when ministering in Divine 

It has been reserved for the antiquaries of our 
own day to formulate the true principles of scien- 
tific archaeology. We smile at the childish fancies 
which are gravely put forward in works not more 
than fifty years old ; small wonder is it, then, that 
we find these early treatises on vestments disap- 
pointing. All are firmly impressed with the 
Levitical origin of the usage and shape of Chris- 
tian vesture ; and the majority are occupied with 
vague speculations concerning the symbolic mean- 

62 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

ing of the individual items in an ecclesiastical 

Mr. Marriott assigns a reason for the then 
universal belief in the Levitical origin of ecclesi- 
astical vestments which is highly ingenious, and 
probably correct. I cannot do better than cite his 
words on the subject : 

' Churchmen who had travelled widely, as then 
some did, in East as well as West, could hardly 
fail to notice the remarkable fact, that at Con- 
stantinople as at Rome, at Canterbury as at Aries, 
Vienna or Lyons, one general type of ministering 
dress was maintained, varying only in some minor 
details ; and that this dress everywhere presented 
a most marked contrast to what was in their time 
the prevailing dress of the laity. And as all 
knowledge of classical antiquity had for three 
centuries or more been well-nigh extinct in the 
church, it was not less natural that they should 
have sought a solution of the phenomenon thus 
presented to them in a theory of Levitical origin, 
which from that time forward was generally 

Rabanus Maurus, as we have already stated 

{supra^ p. 12), was the first who endeavoured to 

draw the parallel between the Christian and the 

Jewish vestments. The older writers saw the 

* Vest. Christ., p. Ixxviii. 

'The Fifial Form of Vestments. 63 

difficulties in the way of establishing a 'complete 
correspondence. Thus Walfrid Strabo {circa 840), 
in chapter xxiv of his ' De Rebus Ecclesiasticis/ 
merely says : * Numero autem suo antiquis respon- 
dent ' (In their number they correspond to the 
ancient vestments) ; and he further admits that 
mass was formerly celebrated by a priest robed in 
everyday dress.* But, as the desire to prove the 
correspondence grew more widespread, changes and 
additions were rapidly made in the vestments 
themselves, with a view to assimilating the two 
systems. In the interval betv/een the ninth and 
eleventh centuries the number of recognised vest- 
ments was doubled by the accretions thus made 
to the original set. 

As the simplest and most intelligible method of 
exhibiting the extent of these changes, I have 
drawn up the subjoined table, in which are given 
the lists of vestments known to writers on ecclesi- 
astical matters during this interval of time. These 
lists are placed in parallel columns, and a uniform 
system of nomenclature has been adopted, so that 
the reader can see at a glance the date of the 
various additions : 

* Vestes etiam sacerdotales per incrementa ad eum qui 
nunc habetur auctae sunt ornatum. Nam primis temporibus 
communi indumento vestiti missas agebant, sicut et hactenus 
quidam Orientalium facere perhibentur. — Walafrid Strabo 
De Reb. Eccl., cap. xxlv (Migne cxiv 952). 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

circa 820. 

saec. X. 


of Chartres, 

oh. 1 1 15. 

Honorius of 

circa 1130. 

Innocent III, 
circa 1 200. 




























































From this table it will be seen that the number 
of vestments was increased, not so much by the 
invention of entirely new ornaments, as in the 
exaltation to the rank of separate ' vestments ' of 
what had previously been subordinate. The ring 
and staff, for instance, were known to the 
councillors at Toledo, but they do not appear in 
these lists till the twelfth century. 

We must now discuss each of these vestments, 
noting their shape and the peculiarities which they 
presented at different times. It will be convenient 
to follow the order of the above table. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 65 

I. ^rhe Alb. — We have traced the history of this 
vestment from its use as a purely secular garment 
till the ninth century, and have seen how its pro- 
portions, at first ample, were contracted till the 
vestment fitted with comparative tightness to the 
body, on account of the greater convenience which 
the less flowing form of the vestment offered for 
active administration in Divine service. 

The material of which the alb was made was 
usually linen, of more or less fine quality ; but 
we often meet with entries in old inventories of 
church goods which enumerate albs of other 
material. Silk and cloth of gold are very com- 
monly mentioned, and velvet is not unknown. 
Thus we have 

* Albe sunt viginti de serico principales.' — Inv. West- 
minster Abbey, 1388. 

* 30 albes of old cloth of Baudkyn.' — Inv. Peterborough, 


' One olde aulbe of whyte velvyt.' — Inv. St Martin Dover, 


The proper colour of the alb was white ; but in 
England coloured albs were sometimes worn, and 
we meet with such vestments in inventories passim. 
The following is a selection : 

* Red albes for Passion w^eek, 27. 
'40 Blue albes of divers sorts. 

* 7 Albes called Ferial black.' — Inv. Peterborough, 1539. 

* Alba de rubea sindone brudata.' — Inv. Canterbury. 

The ornamentation of the alb, in the earlier 


66 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

years of the third period, sometimes consisted of 
round gold plates, just above the lower hem of 
the vestment, one on either side. Occasionally 
there were rows of small gold plates arranged 
round the lower edge. Albs of the first kind 
were called albae sigillatae, from the seal-like ap- 
pearance of the gold plates. Albs of the second 
kind were named albae bullatae. Dr Rock quotes 
the following : 

* Camisias albas sigillatas holosericas.' — Record of gift of 
King -^thelwulf to St Peter's, Rome, in Liber Pontiiic. in 
Vita Benedicti III, t. iii, p. i68, ed. Vignolio. 

*Alba bona et buUata.' — Peterborough, a.d. 1189. 

The more usual ornamentation, however, and 
that which became universal in later years, con- 
sisted in ornamental patches of embroidery, tech- 
nically called apparels^ sewn on to various parts of 
the vestment. There were two such rectangular 
patches just above the lower hem,"^ one in front, 
one behind ; two similar patches, one on the back, 
the other on the breast ; two small patches, one on 
each cuff; a narrow strip encircling the aperture 
for the head, more for use (as a binding to prevent 
tearing) than for ornament ; and, in earlier 
examples, two narrow strips running down in 

* Very often — perhaps more often than not — the lower 
hem was ornamented with a narrow edging of embroidery 
running all round. In some albs as represented on Conti- 
nental monuments there is a considerable distance between 
the apparel and the hem. 

The Final Form of Vestme?its, 67 

front and two behind, like the clavi of the Roman 

In the earliest representations of albs, as seen on 
sculptured monuments, the vestment is left plain; 
one of the earliest apparelled albs being on an 
effigy to the memory of Bishop Giffard, at 
Worcester, 1301. This, however, does not imply 
more than that the apparels were originally painted 
on, and that the paint has worn off. 

Another difference is observable between the 
cuff-apparels of early effigies and of those of later 
date. In the early albs the cuff-apparel invariably 
encircles the whole wrist ; but in later specimens 
we find that it has shrunk to a small square patch, 
sewn on the part of the sleeve which is toward 
the back of the hand. 

Dr Rock has shown some reason for believing 
that the apparels were occasionally hung loose 
over their proper place ; the lower hem apparels 
being suspended from the girdle, and those on 
the breast and back being fastened together by 
two cords, between which the head was passed, 
and which consequently, when in position, ran 
across the shoulders. This was obviously sug- 
gested by convenience ; for the entry in the 
accounts of St Peter's, Sandwich — 

' for washing of an awbe and an amyce parleying to the 
vestments of the garters and flour de lice and for sewing on 
of the parelles of the same, v^ ' 

68 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

— tells us what we should have expected, that 
the apparels had to be removed from the vest- 
ment when it was washed, and sewn on again 
afterwards. It was only natural that some such 
plan as the loose suspension of the apparels should 
be followed ; for the constant ripping off and 
sewing on of the embroidery must have been not 
only laborious, but ultimately detrimental to the 

This entry gives us an instance of another fact, 
that vestments and suits of vestments were named 
after the pattern which was embroidered upon 
their apparels. A singular collection occurs in the 
Peterborough inventory, including 

'6 albes with Peter keys. 

* 6 albes called the Kydds. 

* 7 albes called Meltons. 
' 6 albes called Doggs.' 

Albs were sometimes worn plain, /.^., without 
apparel. The Salisbury Missal, for example, 
forbids the apparelled alb to be worn on Good 
Friday ; and it is not at all impossible that some 
of the plain albs, as represented on early monu- 
ments, are really intended for unadorned vest- 

Some difference of opinion seems to exist among 
the authorities about the mystical signification of 
this vestment. Rabanus Maurus holds it to in- 
culcate purity of life. Amalarius of Metz, con- 
trasting Jerome's description of the tight-fitting 

T^he Final Form of Vestments, 69 

Jewish tunic with the flowing alb of his own day, 
considers that it denotes the liberty of the New 
Testament dispensation as contrasted with the 
servitude of the Old. Pseudo-Alcuin thinks that 
it means perseverance in good deeds, and that 
therefore Joseph is described as wearing a tunica 
talaris among his brethren. ' For a tunic which 
reaches all the way to the ankles is a good work 
carried out to the end, for the ankle is the end 
of the body.' Ivo of Chartres asserts that it 
signifies the mortification and chastisement of the 
members. Honorius of Autun agrees more or less 
with Rabanus Maurus ; but Innocent III regards 
it as symbolical of newness of life, ' because it is 
as unlike as possible to the garments of skins 
which are made from dead animals, and with 
which Adam was clothed after his fall.' 

The following dimensions are among those given 
by Mrs Dolby as the correct measurements of an 
alb for a figure of medium height and ordinary 
proportions : 

Length behind when made - - - 4 9 

Length before - - - - - - 4 5 

Depth of shoulder-band - - - - o 8| 

Width of same o ^i 

Length of sleeve, outside of arm - - z \\ 

Width of sleeve at wrist folded in two - o 6\ 

Width of sleeve half-way up - - - o 9^ 

Length of neck-band - - - - 2 2o 

Width of same - - - - - o ij 

Opening down front - - - - ^ ^ i> 

JO Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

II. The Girdle, with which the alb is secured, is 
a narrow band, usually of silk, the ends of which 
terminate in a tassel. 

The colour of the girdle is properly white, 
though occasionally it varied with the colour of 
the day. Though (as stated) properly of silk, it 
is sometimes made of cotton. 

Occasionally the girdle was embroidered in 
colours. In the Westminster inventory of 1388 
we have : 

' Zone serice sunt septem diversi operis et diversorum 

The following is a selection of the esoteric 
meanings ascribed to this vestment : custodia 
mentis ; discretio o'mnium virtutum ; virtus con- 
tinentiae ; perfecta Christi caritas. 

The length of the girdle is stated at about four 
yards. The length of the alb, it should be noticed, 
was so considerable that it was necessary to draw 
it through the girdle and let it hang over above 
it. It is therefore extremely rare (if not unknown) 
for the girdle to be visible on mediaeval monuments, 
for even in those exceptional effigies in which the 
whole length of the alb is visible, the latter vest- 
ment entirely conceals the girdle by falling over it. 

III. The Amice. — This vestment was quite un- 
known in the earlier period : it was a mediaeval 

The Final Form of Vestments, j i 

The amice was clearly originally intended to 
serve as a hood ; and a survival of this use remains 
in the ritual of vesting, in which the priest first 
places the vestment on his head, with the prayer 
' Impone Domine capiti meo galeam salutis ad 
expugnandum diabolicos incursus,' before adjusting 
it round his neck. 

In several dioceses of France the amice was worn 
as a hood upon the head from All Saints' Day till 
Easter, and something of the same kind may have 
been the practice elsewhere ; thus, we find an effigy 
of a priest in Towyn, Merionethshire, and another 
in Beverley Minster, in which the amice is drawn 
over the head hoodwise. 

In shape the amice was a rectangle (the dimen- 
sions are given as thirty-six inches by twenty-five 
inches). At each end strings were sewn, which 
were of sufficient length to cross over the breast 
and encircle the body. An apparel of embroidered 
work ran along one of the long sides ; so that 
when the vestment was in position it was turned 
down, like a collar, over the other vestments round 
the neck, and so far open as to leave the throat of 
the wearer exposed. A small cross was marked in 
the centre of the upper edge of the vestment. 

So much of this vestment was concealed that 
there appears to have been little or no scope for 
variety of treatment, either in form or material. 
The Jatter seems alwavs to have been linen. The 

72 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

orphreys (embroidered edges), of course, are sub- 
ject to the same unlimited variation of design as 
the corresponding ornaments on other vestments ; 
but the shape is constant. 

The same uniformity is not, however, observ- 
able in the symbolism of this vestment. The 
variety of meanings is even greater than is the case 
with the alb and its girdle. We are told that it 
signifies {inter alia) the Holy Incarnation ; the 
purity of good works; the subjugation of the 
tongue ; the earthy origin and heavenly goal of the 
human body ; the necessity of justice and mercy 
in addition to temperance and abstention from 
evil ; and the endurance of present hardships. 

IV. The Stole. — The early history of the stole 
has been discussed in the preceding chapter, in 
considering the orarium. 

Why, or when, the proper name of the vest- 
ment became * stole,' or stola^ does not appear. 
It is named stola in the later ecclesiastical canons 
of our second period ; but it is not clear how 
stola^ which in its original significance denoted a 
flowing tunic, like the under-garment of the 
Roman or the alha of the priests of the second 
period, came to signify a narrow strip of orphrey- 
work. It is quite certain that it cannot be ex- 
plained (as some writers have attempted to do) 
as the orphrey of a lost vestment which has sur- 
vived while the bulk of it has disappeared ; for 

The Final Form of Vestments, 73 

the continuity of the stole and the orarium is a 
matter of historic certainty, and we have already 
shown reason for assigning an entirely different 
origin to the latter vestment. Such an evolution, 
too, as that of a narrow strip from a large vest- 
ment is not natural, and is contrary to our ob- 
servation in the history of other vestments ; and it 
assumes the existence of embroidered ' orphreys ' 
at a time far too remote for such ornamentation 

Fig. 6.— Stole-ends, showing Varieties in Form and Orna- 

to be found. This hypothesis has suggested one 
of the less probable etymologies which have been 
proposed for the word orarium. 

The stole is a narrow strip of embroidered 
work, nine or ten feet long and two or three inches 
wide. In its original form it was of the same width 
throughout ; but about the thirteenth or four- 
teenth century we find its ends terminating in a 
rectangular compartment, giving each the appear- 
ance of a tau cross. This was in order to secure 
extra room for the cross with which every stole 

74 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

was supposed to be marked at the end. For the 
same purpose the modern stole expands gradually 
from the middle point, where also a cross is 

Priests wear the stole between the alb and 
chasuble, crossed over the breast, and secured in 
that position by the girdle of the alb — nowadays 
only when officiating at mass, formerly on all 
occasions on which the stole was worn. Deacons 
generally secure it over the left shoulder and under 
the right arm, thereby approximating the disposi- 
tion of the vestment to that of the ancient Roman 
ornament from which the vestment takes its origin. 
Bishops wear the stole between the alb and tunicle"^'^ 
pendent perpendicularly on either side of the 
breast ; the pectoral cross which they wear is 
supposed to supply the place of the crossed 

The embroidery and material of the stole were 
supposed to tally with that of the alb, with which 
it was worn. The same rule applies to the 
maniple, and we commonly find in inventories 
that the three vestments are catalogued together. 
But if we can trust the evidence of brasses and 
other monuments, the vestments of different suits 
were worn together in a very haphazard manner, 

* The late brass of Bishop Goodrich, in Ely Cathedral, 
represents the stole between the tunicle and dalmatic. This 
is exceptional, and probably an engraver's error. 

The Final Form of Vestments, 75 

and it does not seem possible to extract any defi- 
nite rule as to the collocation of different vest- 
ments embroidered with different patterns of 


The ends of the stole— below the embroidered 
cross when such existed— terminated in a fringe ; 
and it was not uncommon in earlier years for 
little bells to be included in this fringe. Thus we 

have : 

' Una stola cum frixio Anglicano cum pedis albis et endicis 
etcampanellis.'-Inv. Vest. Papae Bonif. VIII, cit. ap. Rock, 
' Church of our Fathers.' 

The stole is said to signify ' the easy yoke of 
Christ.' Authorities earlier than the twelfth 
century are agreed on this point, though they 
differ on some minor details in the subordinate 
symbolism of its length, disposition, etc. But 
Honorius of Autun asserts that it signifies 'in- 
nocence,' and makes some vague and, to the 
present writer, unintelligible allusions to Esau's 
sale of his birthright ; while Innocent III, with a 
faint reminiscence of the earlier exegesis, declares 
it to signify the servitude which Christ under- 
went for the salvation of mankind— referring to 

Phil, ii 5-8. 

V. The Maniple.— Tht history of the develop- 
ment of the maniple follows closely on that of the 
stole. With a very few exceptions, the maniple, as 
represented on mediaeval monuments, differs from 


Ecclesiastical Vestments, 


associated, in size 

the stole, with which it 

The maniple was originally worn over the 
fingers of the left hand. This arrangement was 
most inconvenient, as it was constantly liable to 
slip off, and the fingers had to be held in a con- 

FiG. 7.— Archbishop Stigand. (From the Bayeux tapestry, showing 
maniple carried over fingers.) 

strained attitude throughout the service. It was 
early found more com^fortable and convenient to 
place the vestment over the left wrist ; but no 

* One of these exceptions is presented by a small brass 
of a priest (Thomas Westeley, 1535) at Wyvenhoc, near 

•The Final Form of Vestments. J J 

definite rule seems to have been formulated, and, 
indeed, in some parts of France the earlier custom 
seems to have survived till the middle of the 
eighteenth century. When placed on the wnst it 
was either buttoned or sewn so as to form a per- 
manent loop, so that it should not slip off the 


In a few effigies the maniple is represented on 
the right wrist. For this there is no hturgical 
authority, and it can only be attributed to the 
blundering of the engraver or sculptor.* 

In reference to its original utilitarian purpose, 
Amalarius assigns to the maniple the significance 
of the ' purification of the mind.' Pseudo-Alcmn 
holds it to denote this present life (in qua super- 
fluos humores patimur). It is also said to denote 
penitence, caution, and the prize in the racecourse. 
The width of the maniple is the same as that of 
the stole— the length is given at from three feet 
to three feet eight inches. 

- There is a remarkable statuette of alabaster in the 
Cambridge Museum of Archaeology, which originally formed 
part of I retable in Whittlesford Church, Cambridgeshire. 
In this figure, which is clad in Eucharistic vestments, the 
maniple is absent, and its place seems to be supplied by a 
chain suspended over the right wrist. This may, however, 
represent some such saint as St Leonard, whose emblem is a 
chain and manacles : in which case it is just possible that 
the sculptor omitted the maniple to avoid the inartistic sym- 
metry which would result from its insertion. 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

VI. The Dalmatic. — I am unable to find any 
representation of this vestment older than the 
ninth century, showing the special features which 
distinguished it from the other vestments of the 
mediaeval period. Before that date the dalmatic 

it v!^ 

-'i'- ^t". 


HI- V* '^ 


'" ^"- / 

/1*r\ ".■ ts 


/Mrrii; ; 

/«/ »- ^LftV vi' 

/nS// a^^^«. '^' 


V'' V 


»• 4 /B 

91 nSW^ V 1 '- 


1 ^- [ ID 


.'^^ 1^ 

If #1 

' [^ 

>7'. i^^ 

MJ vm' 



\ 11 







^i# # 

1 yj^^r. 

w • tf*^» 

m ''^' 


1/ s 







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.<^^ 1 

Fig. 8.— Deacon in Epis- 
copal Dalmatic. (From 
Rand worth Church.) 

Fig. 9. 

■Deacon in Diagonal Dal- 

seems to have been identical with the all?a, pos- 
sibly distinguished from it by being a little shorter 
when, as at Rome, the two vestments were worn 

In the mediaeval period, however, this vestment 
(and its modification, the tunicle) is marked out 

The Final Form of Vestments, 79 

from all others by being slit up a short distance 
on either side. These side-slits were decorated 
with fringes ; but here an important theoretical 
distinction must be observed between the dalmatic 
of a bishop and that of a deacon. This was often 
neglected in mediaeval times, and is consequently 
frequently overlooked by ecclesiologists of the 
present day. In the dalmatic, as worn by a 
bishop, the side-slits, the lower hems, and the 
ends of the sleeves were fringed ; in the dalmatic 
of a deacon there were also fringes, hut only on the 
left sleeve and along the left slit. 

The true reason for this distinction is probably 
to be sought in the same direction as that which 
prompted the peculiar diaconal method of wearing 
the ovarium — convenience. The deacon, who was 
practically the servitor at the altar, required to 
have his right side free and unhampered as much 
as possible ; the heavy fringes, which might have 
impeded him, were therefore dispensed with upon 
that side. But such an explanation would by no 
means satisfy the early mediaeval writers on vest- 
ments, and we are accordingly informed that as 
the left side typifies this present life and the right 
that which is to come, so the fringes on the left 
indicate those cares through which we must pass 
in this world, while their absence on the right 
symbolizes our freedom from care in the world to 
come. Why the bishop was not regarded as 

8o Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

exempt from care in the future world does not 

Another singular piece of blundering meets us 
at St David's Cathedral. Here we have two 
effigies representing clerics, who, though they 
wear the dalmatic, yet show the stole disposed 
symmetrically, in the manner of priests.* Either 
the presence of the dalmatic or the presbyteral 
stole must be incorrect ; but in our ignorance of 
the identity of the persons whom these effigies 
commemorate we cannot decide which. Bloxam's 
idea, that these figures represent archdeacons, 
though ingenious, is untenable ; for there is no 
authority for assigning the dalmatic to an arch- 
deacon of priestly grade ; and we have other 
figures of priests known to have been archdeacons 
in various parts of England, none of which show 
the dalmatic. 

The ornamentation of the dalmatic before the 
twelfth century consisted either of vertical bands 
(like the clavi) or else of horizontal bands, of 
orphrey-work. After that date the plain white 
vestment was superseded by one covered all over 
with elaborate embroidery. This is especially the 
case with the episcopal dalmatic, which is only 
what we should have expected. 

We have already stated one symbolical meaning 

* This description is given on the authority of Bloxam, 
companion volume, p. 64. 

The Final Form of Vestments, 8 1 

attaching to the dalmatic and its appurtenances. 
A few more may be of interest : the Passion of 
Christ ; the * pure religion and undefiled,' as 
described by St James ; the Old and New Testa- 
ments ; the crucifixion of the world in the wearer ; 
the wide mercy of Christ, etc. 

All of the early writers are misled by the decree 
of Pope Sylvester into imagining that Sylvester 
first instituted this garment as a purely ecclesi- 
astical vestment ; some even go the length of 
assigning a mystical meaning to the colohium, 
which it superseded. Even Walafrid Strabo, who 
in many respects is the least mystical of the early 
mediaeval writers on ecclesiastical vestments, is 
deceived, though he wisely contents himself with 
stating the fact that Sylvester had so commanded, 
without attempting to assign any reason for his so 

VII. The Chasuble. — The variety of materials 
of w^hich the chasuble was made may be gathered 
from the following extracts from the Lincoln 
Inventory of 1536 : 

' Imprimis a Chesable of rede cloth of gold w* orfreys 
before and behind sett w' perles blew white and rede w^ 
plaits of gold enamelled.' 

* Item a Chesuble of Rede veivett w' kateryn wheils of 

* Item a chesuble of Rede sylk browdered w' falcons & 
leopardes of gold.' 


82 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

* Item a chesable of whyte damaske browdered w' flowres 
of gold.' 

' Item a chesable of whyte tartaron browdered w* trey- 
foyles of gold.' 

* Item a chesable of purpur satten lynyd w' blew bukerham 
havyng dyverse scripturs.' 

' Item a chesable of cloth of tyshew w' orfreys of nedyll 

' Item a chesable of sundon browdered w^ mones k sterres 
lyned w' blew bukerham.' 

Of the materials here mentioned the commonest 
were velvet, silk, or cloth of gold. 

In the latest days of the transitional and the 
earliest days of the mediaeval period, there were 
two kinds of chasubles in use, the eucharistic and 
the processional. The distinction between them 
was utilitarian rather than ritualistic ; it consisted 
in a hood sewn to the back of the latter, and 
designed as a covering for the head during out- 
door processions in inclement weather. But the 
processional chasuble early gave place to the cope ; 
and a hooded chasuble does not appear to be 
extant in representations of date later than the 
tenth century. 

The manner in which the early chasubles were 
made seems to have been as follows : A semi- 
circular piece of the cloth of which the vestment 
was to consist was taken, and a notch cut at the 
centre, so that the shape of the cloth resembled 
that of the figure in the annexed diagram ; the 

The Final Form of Vestments, 83 

two straight edges corresponding to the lines AB 
and CD were then brought together and sewn ; 
the result was a vestment somewhat of extinguisher 
shape, with a hole in the middle for the neck, and 
enveloping the body all round to an equal depth 
each way. The result was that when the priest 
had to raise his hands the vestment was gathered 
inconveniently on either shoulder, and probably 
injured by being crushed, certainly hampering the 
wearer by its weight. This difficulty was sur- 
mounted by a very simple expedient. The cloth, 
instead of being shaped as before, was cut into an 
oval form, and an opening was made at the centre for 
the wearer's head, the consequence being that when 
in position the vestment hung down over the front 
and back to some distance, and covered the upper 
part of the arms, though not sufficiently so to 
interfere with their free action. The latter shape 
is that which meets us all through the mediaeval 
period throughout the Western Church. 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

The modern Roman Church has made yet 
another innovation which, although it has its dis- 
advantages, certainly reduces the inconvenience of 
the vestment to a minimum. 
Two fairly large semicircular 
pieces are cut from each side 
of the front of the vestment, 
thereby permitting the hands 
to be brought together when 
necessary without crushing the 
vestment between the forearms, 
which was inevitable in the old 
form. But the wasp-waisted 
appearance of this chasuble is 
ugly, and attempts are being 
made to abolish it and to 
return to the mediaeval pattern. 
Yet another small distinc- 
tion is to be found in the shape 
of individual examples of the 
mediaeval period. We find 

many of these vestments to be 
Fio. 10. — Sir Peter , n- • i 

Legh, Knight and made Circular or elliptical, so 

Priest. (From his , , , i j • 11 

brass at Winwick. that the lower Dorderis rouiided 

Vested in chasuble ^^ . ^j^-j^ ^^^^^^ ^^^^^^ ^^^ 

found to be made in the shape 
known as the vesica piscis^ so that the lower 
extremities terminate in a point more or less 
sharp. Writers who cannot be content with 

The Final Form of Vestments. 85 

simple or commonplace explanations of ^ such 
phenomena as this have laboured in vain to 
invent some esoteric signification which will 
account for it. Perhaps the most common-sense 
guess is that made by Dr Rock, who thinks that 
the rounded chasuble was used during the period 
of rounded architecture— the Saxon and Norman 
—and the pointed chasuble during the pointed 
periods of architecture : a suggestion which we 
should have no difficulty in accepting at once, 
were it not for the fact that scores of brasses and 
other monuments of the Curvilinear and Recti- 
linear periods in architecture exist showing 
rounded chasubles; while (among others) the 
effigy of Bishop John de Tour, at Bathampton 
near Bath, a.d. i 123, shows a pointed vestment. 
We have no space to enter into particulars of the 
other suggestions— the symbolism of the vesica 
piscis, the perfection of the circle, etc. 

The simple explanation seems to be that the 
difference depended merely on the taste and fancy 
of the seamstress or of the engraver of the monu- 
ment. It would be perfectly possible to draw up 
a list of monuments in which the point of the 
chasuble shows every stage from extreme sharpness 
to extreme bluntness, and so, by one step further, 
into a continuous curve. I'his demonstrates that 
no rule was necessarily followed in choosing the 
shape of the chasuble, beyond that of making a 

86 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

fairly symmetrical vestment which should hang 
down in front and behind, and should have a hole 
in the middle through which the priest's head 
should be passed. Nor can we even say that fashion 
affected the shape of the vestment ; for were such 
a list as I have mentioned to be printed here, it 
would be seen to consist of the most haphazard 
and random series of dates and names of places 
thrown together without the slightest regard to 
chronological sequence or geographical position. 

The dimensions of a pointed chasuble (circa 
fourteenth century) at Aix-la-Chapelle, which has 
been accepted as a standard for modern imitation, 
are given as follows : 

ft. in. 
Depth of shoulder, measuring from neck - 2 9 

Length of side, from shoulder to point - 411 

Depth from neck to point in front - - 4 6 

„ „ „ behind - - 4 ic 

The chasuble of St Thomas of Canterbury, at 
Sens Cathedral, which is of the old extinguisher 
shape, is three feet ten inches in depth. In the 
oldest chasubles the length of the vestment behind 
was greater — often much greater — than in front. 
There is a more even balance between back and 
front in later mediaeval times. 

Passing now from the manner of making the 
chasuble to the manner of ornamenting it, we find 
just the same divergence, with apparently just as 

The Final Form of Vestments, 87 

little rule. It is probable that, as the decoration 
was the most costly part of the manufacture of a 
chasuble, the amount of it was regulated by the 
resources available to pay for it. 

We propose to consider at the end of the next 
chapter the classes of patterns with which vest- 
ments generally were decorated in the middle 
ages ; at present, therefore, we shall confine our- 
selves to noticing briefly the positions in which 
these decorations were placed on the chasuble. 

The groundwork of the vestment was either 
plain (invariably so in the older examples) or else 
embroidered or woven with a pattern, according 
to taste and means; the ornamentation proper con- 
sisted of strips of embroidered or ' orphrey ' work, 
as it is technically called, sewn on to the vestment. 
These strips were sewn either on the edge or cross- 
wise on the front and back of the chasuble. 

The edge orphrey is the more frequently met 
with in the brasses of parish priests, "and it is rarely 
so elaborately decorated as are the central orphreys. 
It usually consisted of some simple pattern of 
flowers or geometrical figures recurring at regular 
intervals round the edge. 

Greater variety is seen in the shape of the 
central orphrey, which, being the more elaborate 
and expensive, is almost invariably found repre- 
sented in the monuments of bishops, abbots, and 
other dignitaries, and in the efligies of priests of 

88 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

the richer churches. It sometimes, though rarely, 
consisted of a simple * pillar ' on front and on 
the back of the vestment ; usually this ornamenta- 
tion was extended by the addition of branches of 
orphrey work given off on either side, which 
passed over the shoulder and joined the corre- 
sponding branches of the other pillar, the result 
being that the orphrey on front and back had the 
appearance of the Greek S', or of a Latin cross 
with oblique arms. When the bands were so dis- 
posed, the pillar on the front was called the 
pectoral, the pillar on the back the dorsal, and 
the auxiliary bands, which passed over the 
shoulders, the humeral orphreys. Very frequently 
this design was varied by omitting the part of the 
pectoral and dorsal bands above their intersection 
with the humeral ; this resulted in the * Y cross,' 
which we find in so many effigies in our cathedrals 
and churches. In a few examples the Y or M' is 
inverted, and in some it gives off auxiliary 
branches, so as to resemble {e.g,') the figure >|<. 
It would, however, be waste of time and space to 
enter further into a discussion of what was not 
regulated by any definite rule, but depended on 
caprice, or, at most, on pecuniary considerations. 
More often than not the central orphrey, of 
whatever form, is combined with the edge orphrey, 
and is usually of a different pattern from it. 

In many early chasubles the front and back are 

'The Final Form of Vestments, 89 

charged with an embroidered Latin cross. This is 
also the case with the back of the modern Roman 
or slit vestment. 

When the Y orphrey was placed on the 
chasuble, the space between it and the neck on 
the back was usually filled with an elaborate floral 
design embroidered in gold or crimson. Some- 
times (not always) this extended round the neck, 
and was repeated in front. To this ornament the 
special name of ' flower ' has been attached. 

The chasuble surmounts and safeguards all the 
other vestments ; hence the chasuble signifies 
love, which surmounts all the other virtues, and 
safeguards and illumines their beauty with its 
protection ; so says Rabanus Maurus, prettily 
enough. Amalarius disagrees ; he holds that as 
the chasuble is common to all clerics, so it ought 
to set forth the works which are common to all : 
fasting, thirsting, watching, poverty, reading, 
singing, praying, and the rest. The pseudo- 
Alcuin and Ivo of Chartres agree with Rabanus, 
though for difi^erent reasons. Innocent III, how- 
ever, holds it to signify the virtue of apostolical 
succession : ' For this is the vestment of Aaron, to 
the skirt of which the oil ran down ; but it ran 
down from his head to his beard and from his 
beard to the skirt. Forasmuch as we all receive 
of His spirit, first the Apostles, afterwards the 
rest.' Further, he goes on to say that because the 

go Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

stretching out of the hands divides the chasuble 
into two complete and similar parts, so that vest- 
ment typifies the old and new church before and 
after the time of Christ. 

VIII. The Sandals, — The sandals of the Roman 
citizens are well known — mere soles, secured 
across the instep by one or more thongs of leather, 
and clearly designed to protect the wearer from 
stony roads without unnecessarily cramping or 
confining his feet — an important consideration in 
a hot climate. 

Such a sandal must have been worn by the early 
clergy as Roman citizens, and probably long con- 
tinued in use among the lower orders of clerics. 
It w^as, and still is, the only foot-covering of 
certain monastic orders, and in some cases was 
retained even by monks who had attained to epis- 
copal rank. In St Canice's Cathedral, Kilkenny, 
which contains a unique collection of mediaeval 
efRgies and incised slabs, superior in merit to many 
better-known specimens of mediaeval art, there 
exists a most interesting effigy of a former bishop, 
de Ledrede, who died ci'rca 1350. He is repre- 
sented fully vested in Eucharistic dress ; but in 
place of the episcopal sandals, which an ordinary 
bishop would have worn, he wears the simpler 
monastic sandal, which covers only the sole and 
instep ; and shows the cord of St Francis hanging 
below his alb. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 9 1 

The extension of the Church into more northern 
and colder regions, and the importation of foreign 
customs into the southern metropolis itself, pro- 
bably suggested the transformation of the some- 
what scanty sandal into a more appropriate and 
more comfortable shoe. The traditions of the 
old custom were, however, long maintained in a 
curious way : the upper leathers of the shoe were 
fenestrated or cut into open-work patterns, the 
result being that the bare surface of the foot 
showed through and displayed the decoration in 
light flesh-tint against the dark leather of the shoe. 
When the episcopal stocking was added to the 
equipment of the bishop, the colour became bright 
scarlet, though the efl^ect remained much the same. 

The fenestrated sandals were abandoned about 
the fourteenth century in favour of shoes, in shape 
very much resembling the modern ankle-shoe. It 
would have been inconsistent, however, with the 
spirit of the fourteenth century to have abandoned 
the decorative effect produced by the open-work, 
and neglected to find some substitute. This sub- 
stitute was found in lavish embroidery and in 
ornamentation with jewels and spangles of gold. 
The sandals, in fact, became as elaborate as did 
the rest of the ecclesiastical vestments. 

The sandals, as above described, were worn by 
bishops only, at the Eucharistic service. Deacons 
and priests appear to have worn simple everyday 

92 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

shoes, without ornamentation of any kind. The 
fenestrated shoes (which were popular among the 
dandies of the day as well as consecrated to 
the bishops) were expressly forbidden to them, as 
also were coloured shoes, or shoes of the prepos- 
terous shapes occasionally in vogue among the 
laity of the middle ages. 

' As the sandals partly cover the feet and leave 
them partly bare,' says Rabanus, ' so the teachers 

Fig. II. — Bishop Waynflete's Episcopal Sandal. 

of the Gospel should reveal part of the Gospel 
and should hide the rest, that the faithflil and 
pious may have enough knowledge thereof, and 
the infidel and despiser may find no matter for 
blasphemy. And this kind of shoe warns us like- 
wise that we should have a care to our flesh and 
our bodies in matters of necessity, not in matters 
of lust.' 

Amalarius of Metz enters into further details, 
incidentally touching on some points of difference 
which obtained between the sandal of the bishop 

The Final Form of Vestments, 93 

and that of the priest in his day — the first half of 
the ninth century. The following is a translation 
of his words : 

* The difference in the sandal sets forth a differ- 
ence in the minister. The ofBces of the priest and 
of the bishop are almost identical ; but because 
there is a distinction in their titles and honours 
there is a distinction in their sandals, that we may 
not fall into error upon beholding them, which we 
might well do, owing to the similarity of their 
offices. The bishop has a band (ligaturd) in his 
sandals, which the presbyter has not. It is the 
duty of the bishop to travel throughout the length 
and breadth of his diocese {^parochid) to govern 
the inhabitants ; and lest they should fall from his 
feet, his sandals are bound. The moral of this is, 
that he who mingles with the vulgar crowd must 
secure fast the courses of his mind {gressus mentis). 
The priest, who remains in one spot and offers the 
sacrifice there, walks more securely. The deacon, 
because his office is different from that of the 
bishop, needs not different sandals ; he therefore 
wears them bound, because it is his to go on 
attendance. The subdeacon, because he assists 
the deacon, and has almost the same office, must 
have different sandals, that he be not thought a 
deacon. The inner meaning is this : Because the 
sandals set forth the way of the preacher, the sole, 
which is underneath, warns the preacher not to 


Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

mingle with earthly matters. The tongue of 
white leather, which is under the " tread "* of the 
foot, shows that there ought to be the same 
separation, guiltless and guileless ; that it may be 
said of him, " Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom 
there is no guile ;" let him not be such as were 
the false apostles, who preached in malice and 
disputation. The tongue, which rises thence, and 
is separated from the leather of the sandals, sets 
forth the tongue of those who ought to bear good 
testimony to the preacher, of whom Paul said, 
" He must have a good report of them that are 
without." These are in the lower rank, and to 
some extent are separated from spiritual inter- 
course. The upper tongue is the tongue of the 
spirits {spiritalium), who lead the preacher into 
the work of preaching. These search into the 
past life of the preacher. But the sandals are 
bound round within with white leather ; so must 
the desire of the preacher be pure before God, out 
of a clean conscience ; and without appears the 
black, since the life of the preacher seems despised 
by them that are worldly on account of the myriad 
afflictions of this present life. The upper part ot 
the sandal, through which the foot enters, is sewn 
together with many threads, that the two leather 
bands be not separated ; for at first the preacher 
should apply himself to the many virtues and 
* So Mariott. The original word is calcaneum. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 95 

sayings of the Scriptures, that his outward acts 
may not be at variance with those which are secret 
and known to God only. The tongue of the 
sandals, which is over the foot, sets forth the 
tongue of the preacher. The line made by the 
craft of the shoemaker, stretching from the tongue 
of the sandal to its end, sets forth the perfection of 
the Gospel ; the lines proceeding from either side, 
the law and the prophets, which are repeated in 
the Gospels ; they are repeated at the middle line, 
which stretches to the end. The bands denote the 
mystery of Christ's Incarnation . . . .' 

We have given this strange mixture of mysti- 
cism and observation at length for several reasons. 
First, it emphasizes a curious distinction between 
the shoes of different orders of clergy which is not 
often brought into notice. Secondly, it gives a 
very full, though somewhat obscure, description of 
the sandal in the author's time. And thirdly, it 
exemplifies the absurd lengths to which an author 
can go who endeavours to extract hidden meanings 
from simple and easily explicable facts. Here 
Amalarius endeavours to extract solemn truths even 
from the seams which the maker found necessary 
in joining two pieces of leather together. If some 
modern writers on archaeological subjects took 
timely warning from such a melancholy example, 
we should have fewer wild theories and more facts. 
It is sad that most of Amalarius' successors 

96 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

quietly put aside his elaborately argued piece of 
symbolism. Pseudo-Alcuin is content with the old 
idea of Rabanus, that the Gospel should be kept 
from what is earthy as the feet are kept from the 
ground, but not otherwise covered. Ivo practi- 
cally quotes Rabanus word for word ; and even 
Innocent III, who is usually original, has little 
further to offer beside the quotation : * How 
beautiful are the feet of them that preach the 
gospel of peace !' 

IX. The Pall. — The pall is a symbol of juris- 
diction, which is worn by the Pope, and by him 
bestowed upon all archbishops. 

The material of which the pall is made is white 
wool. Both the shape of the vestment and its 
ornamentation have undergone modifications since 
it was invented, even during the mediaeval period 
itself Its earliest appearance, and all that is 
known of its origin, is described in the preceding 
chapter. The folding of the pallium must have 
given a little trouble whenever it was put on ; and 
this must before long have suggested the shape 
which meets us in the mediaeval pall : that of a 
loop of cloth with two tails projecting from oppo- 
site points in its circumference. A slight differ- 
ence is observable between palls represented early 
and those represented late in the mediaeval period. 
In the former the branches are almost horizontal, 
passing round the arms between the shoulder and 

The Final Form of Vestments, 97 

elbow ; in the latter they pass over the shoulder. 
In the former case the pall resembles a T, in the 

Fig. 12.— St Dunstan. (From a manuscript in the Cottonian 
Library ; showing early forms of pall and mitre.) 

latter a Y, whether seen from before or behind the 

In whichever form it appears, however, the pall 
was secured in its place by pins. At first, when 
the vestments were of simple description, these 
pins could be run through pall and chasuble with- 


98 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

out doing much damage; afterwards, however, 
when enrichments were heaped upon the chasuble, 
these pins were not run into that vestment at all, 
but through loops provided for the purpose. It 
was discovered, however, that the pall in its latest 
development would stay in its place quite as well 
without pins as with them, and the loops were 
therefore abandoned. As the pins were generally 
made of gold, with heads of precious stones, some 
reluctance was felt at abandoning them altogether, 
and accordingly they sank into the position which 
the maniple and other vestments assumed — that of 
being ornaments. 

The length of the pendent tails shows con- 
siderable variety at different times. They are 
extremely long — often extravagantly so — in monu- 
ments dating between the eleventh and fourteenth 
centuries. After that date they were curtailed, 
and at present are not more than a foot long. 
There is a little button of lead sewn into the ends 
of the tails to make them hang properly. 

The pall never displayed that tendency to 
elaborate adornment which distinguished the other 
vestments of the mediaeval age. Doubtless the 
fact that all palls were made at Rome, and but few 
were made at a time, prevented any great change 
in fashion. Some differences are, notwithstanding, 
noticeable. In the earliest representations of 
tailed palls there is to be seen a single cross at the 

The Final Form of Vestments. 99 

end of each tail ; the same cross is to be seen 
worked on early oraria and mappulae. But in 
mediaeval and modern times there is a difference. 
At present the pall has six crosses, one on each 
tail and four on the oval, worked in black. In 
the middle ages we find sometimes four, sometimes 
as many as eight, worked in purple. 

The history of each individual pall is curious. 
On the morning of St Agnes's Day (January 21) 
in each year, two lambs are sent into Rome each in 
a basket, the baskets being slung over a horse's back. 
These lambs are chosen with special reference to 
whiteness and goodness. The horse is driven to 
the palace of the Pope, who comes to a window 
and makes the sign of the cross over the lambs, 
which are then conducted to the church of St 
Agnes without the walls. Here, gaily adorned 
with flowers and ribbons, they are brought up to 
the altar, and kept there till mass is sung. After 
mass (formerly at the Agnus Dei) the celebrant 
blesses the lambs, which are then handed over to 
the charge of the canons of St John Lateran, by 
whom they are sent back to the Pope. The Pope 
hands them on to the dean of his subdeacons, 
who delivers them up to a nunnery, where they 
are kept and fed. When they are shorn, the 
wool is woven by the nuns into palls. On the 
eve of the day of St Peter and St Paul these 
palls are taken to St Peter's, and there blessed 

loo Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

after evensong, after which they are shut up in a 
silver-gilt box to vt^ait till they are wanted for 
bestowal on a new archbishop. 

Each archbishop on election must go to Rome 
in person to receive the pall, unless prevented by 
serious obstacles — when the latter is the case it 
is solemnly sent to him by the Pope. He is not 
permitted to engage in any episcopal duty before 
receiving the pall ; afterwards the vestment is 
worn only at High Mass on the following days : 
Nativity, St Stephen, St John, Circumcision, 
Epiphany, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, 
Holy Saturday, Easter Sunday, Monday and 
Tuesday, Ascension, Pentecost, Feasts of the 
Virgin, Nativity of St John the Baptist, all days 
of Apostles, All Saints, Dedications of Churches, 
principal local feasts in the diocese. Consecrations 
of Bishops, Ordinations of Clergy, Feast of the 
local Dedication, and the Anniversary of the 
wearer's consecration. The Pope, however, wears 
the pall at all times when he says mass. 

* The pall is the symbol of the archiepiscopal 
authority, therefore it may not be worn without 
express papal permission outside the limits of the 
jurisdiction of the archbishop.*" When he dies, 
the pall is buried with him, but it is only placed 

* We give a figure of an effigy in Mayence Cathedral to 
the memory of Albrecht von Brandenburg, who died in 1545. 
This effigy is remarkable, and probably unique, in represent- 

T^he Final Form of Vestments. i o i 

on his shoulders if he be buried within his own 
province, otherwise it is folded and placed beneath 
his head.* The pall is the only vestment which 
may not be lent by one cleric to another. 

ing the archbishop as wearing two 
palls. Although this is a con- 
venient method of informing the 
world of the fact that the person 
commemorated held two arch- 
bishoprics (Mayence and Magde- 
burg), it is, of course, a solecism, 
as the pall of the one could 
not legally be worn within the 
precincts of the other, and z'ice 
versa. This monument is espe- 
cially valuable, as it clearly dis- 
tinguishes between the cross-staff 
and the pastoral staff, which are 
often confused. See the account 
of the pastoral staff later on in 
the present chapter. 

* It is well known that ecclesi- 
astics were buried in their Eucha- 
ristic vestments, with a chalice 
and paten, the former often filled 
with wine. Much nonsense is 

talked nowadays of the piety of the mediaeval builders and 
undertakers, who put their best work where no human eye 
could see it. "Unfortunately for this theory, the chalice and 
paten were usually cheap base metal (Canterbury affords one 
notable exception), and the vestments were often an inferior 
or worn-out set. Economy was considered then, as now. 

I02 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

We now come to a singular point in the history 
of the pall, and one which has so far baffled 
ecclesiologists to explain. Although the pall is 
generally regarded as the peculiar emblem of arch- 
bishops, and seems to have been kept for their 
especial and peculiar use by the rites which we 
have described, yet a few favoured bishops have 
from very early times been entitled to wear this 
vestment. The bishoprics which possess this 
privilege are those of Autun, Bamberg, Dol, 
Lucca, Ostia, Pavia, and Verona. 

The pall is represented on several monuments 
of bishops of these dioceses, e.g., the slab of 
Bishop Otto (1192) and the brass of Bishop 
Lambert (1399), both in Bamberg Cathedral. In 
illuminated manuscripts and elsewhere we often 
find figures of clerics of episcopal rank wearing the 
pall, but holding the crook-headed staff, commonly 
supposed to be the insignia of a bishop as distin- 
guished from an archbishop ; but as numerous 
examples exist to show that the latter notipn (like 
the majority of popular ideas in archaeology) is 
erroneous, this combination proves nothing. 

The peculiar circumstances distinguishing the 
pall from the rest of the ecclesiastical vestments 
would lead us to expect some remarkable dis- 
quisitions on its symbolism. This expectation is 
not disappointed. The cross on the back and 
front reminds the wearer to reflect piously and in 

The Final Form of Vestments. 103 

a worthy manner on the Passion of the Redeemer, 
and holds up before the people the sign of their 
Redemption. Such is the old view, and it has at 
least the merit of simplicity and religious feeling. 
But, unfortunately, Amalarius, in his dissecting 
manner, draws a parallel between the pall and 
the golden plate of the Levitical High Priest ; 
this clears the way for the extraordinary disquisi- 
tion of the pseudo-Alcuin on the Tetragramma- 
ton T\'\T\'^ (as he inaccurately writes it), wherein 
Jod signifies * principium,' //^ 'iste,' Vau 'vita,' 
and Heth ' passio ' — ' id est, iste est principium 
passionis vitae.' Honorius thinks, however, that 
the four letters typify the four arms of the cross. 
Innocent III and others tell us that the pall 
signifies that discipline with which archbishops 
should rule themselves and those set under them. 
As Innocent's account of the pall gives as full 
an account as can be obtained of the vestment and 
its ornamentation and fastenings, we give an 
abstract of it here : 

' The pall which the principal bishops wear 
signifies the discipline with which archbishops 
should rule themselves aud those set under them. 
By this the golden chain* is obtained which those 
receive who strive lawfully, of which Solomon 
saith, '' My son, hear the instruction of thy father 
and forsake not the law of thy mother, for they 

* A not uncommon comparison for the loop of the pall. 

I04 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head and 
chains about thy neck." For the pallium is made 
of white wool, woven, having a circle above con- 
straining the shoulders, and two tails [lineae) 
hanging down on either side ; moreover, there are 
four purple crosses, front and back, on the right 
and on the left. On the left side it is double, 
and single on the right.'* After a long moraliza- 
tion on these facts, he goes on : ' The three pins 
which are fixed in the pallium over the breast, on 
the shoulder and in the back, denote pity for his 
neighbour, the administration of his office, and the 
meting out of justice. . . . There is no pin 
fastened in the right shoulder,' because there is no 
trouble in everlasting rest. ' The needle is golden; 
sharp below, rounded above, enclosing a precious 
stone,' which bears a variety of meanings. If we 
may believe the Elizabethan reformers, the pall 
was an expensive item in an archbishop's insignia. 
Although Gregory I ordained that it should be 
given to the archbishop-elect freely. Jewel speaks 
of the Archbishop of Canterbury giving 5,000 
florins (^1,125 at 4s. 6d. the florin) to the Pope 
for his pall, in addition to the first-fruits of his 
province ; and Bullinger speaks of the pall being 
so dear that ' in gathering money for it ' the arch- 
bishop often ' beggared his whole diocese.' 

X. The Stockings, or buskins, seem to have 
* A survival of the old method of wearing it. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 105 


been originally appropriated to the Pope alone, 
bishops being content with the somewhat scanty 
sandal already described. But by the time of Ivo 
of Chartres the caligae had taken their place 
among the articles in an episcopal wardrobe, 
is the first writer who men- 
tions them. In the middle 
ages they, like all the other 
vestments of which we have 
been treating, forsook their 
primitive simplicity and be- 
came enriched with elaborate 
ornamentation. They sig- 
nify the need of framing the 
courses of their feet aright ; 
and in that they reach to 
the knees, they indicate that 
the wearer should strengthen 
the feeble knees weakened 

by heedlessness, and hasten flete's Episcopal Stock- 
to preach the Gospel. 

XI. The Subcingulum. — The discussion of this 
vestment will be more difficult than that of any 
other among the equipment of the clergy of the 
West. It is all but obsolete at the present day ; 
there does not seem to be more than one repre- 
sentation of it extant, and that only shows a small 
portion of it in an unsatisfactory manner ; and the 

Fig. 14.— Bishop Wayn" 

io6 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

references to it in ecclesiastical writers are few 
and far between. 

In antiquarian or any other investigations it is 
invariably the best rule, when a puzzle is set for 
solution, to work backwards from the known to 
the unknown. We will follow this course in 
speaking of this vestment, and commence with a 
description of it as worn at the present day. 

The modern suhcingulum is reserved for the 
exclusive use of the Pope. It takes the form of a 
girdle, passed round the alb, and having on the 
left side a maniple-like appendage. This seems 
to have been the form which it had in the end of 
the fourteenth century, for in an ' Ordo Missae 
Pontificalis,' published by Georgi,* we read : 
* Primo induit (pontifex) sibi albam, deinde cinc- 
torium cum manipulo ad sinistram partem.* In 
the century before this Durandus, in his ' Rationale 
Divinorum Officiorum,' writes : ' Sane a sinistro 
latere pontificis ex cingulo duplex dependet suc- 
cinctorium 'f — a doubled ' apron ' hangs on the 
left hand side ; and he likens it to a quiver, in the 
course of an elaborate comparison between the 
episcopal vestments of his time and the spiritual 
armour of the Christian. 

The succinctorium must have adopted this form 

* Liturgia Rom. Pont., vol. iii, p. 556 ; cit, ap. Rock, 
Church of Our Fathers, 
t Rationale, III 4. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 1 07 

about the middle of the thirteenth century. At 
the beginning of that century we find that it had 
its use, and was not a mere ornament. In the 
* Ordo Romanus ' of Cencio de Sabellis, written 
at the end of the twelfth century,* is a description 
of the new Pope's taking possession of the Church 
of St John Lateran. He is there described as 
being ' girt with a belt of crimson silk, hanging 
from which is a purple purse (bursa) containing 
twelve precious stones and some musk.' These all 
had their symbolical meaning : the belt denoted 
purity, the purse almsgiving, the stones the 
apostles, the musk ' a good odour in the sight of 

Innocent III, writing at the commencement of 
the thirteenth century, describes the vestment as 
peculiar to bishops^ but does not refer to it as 
peculiar to popes ; neither, be it noticed, does 
Cencio. The last restriction may have crept in 
one or two centuries after Innocent. He does 
not enter into many details concerning it, but he 
clearly distinguishes it from the zona^ or girdle, 
which denotes continence, as the subcingulum sig- 
nifies abstinence.! 

About this time a fresco was executed on the 

* Printed in Mabillon, Musei Ital., ii, p. 212. 

t Were it not for this, we might infer from the other 
passages quoted that the succintoriura was simply hung on 
the ordinary girdle. 


Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

wall of the Sagro Speco at Subiaco, which remains 
till the present day. It represents a Pope fully 
vested, but under the folds of the chasuble on 
either side is a fretted orna- 
ment which is certainly not 
part of any of the ordinary 
vestments of any rank of 
clergy. There is no alterna- 
tive but to regard Dr Rock 
as correct in considering this 
ornament as part of the sub- 

This being granted, the sub- 
cingulum is seen to be a girdle, 
from either side of which 
depends a lozenge - shaped 
' lappet.' We shall meet with 
a similar lappet in the eniyo- 
vaTiov of the Greek Church. 
Only portions of these lappets 
are to be seen in the fresco 
in question, but enough is 
apparent to show them to be lozenge-shaped. 

The testimony of Cencio points to these lappets 
being, not mere ornaments, but bags or purses 
hung to the belt ; and this brings us to another 
stage in the evolution of this vestment. We 
know that through the middle ages a bag called a 
gypciere hung at the belts of civilians, and served 

Fig. 15. — Figure of a 
Pope. {Temp. Inno- 
cent III.) 

T^he Final Form of Vestments, 109 

the double purpose of purse and pocket. It is 
but natural to suppose that the early clergy found 
such appendages useful even in divine service. 
Let us now go yet further, and see whether con- 
firmation of these theories awaits us. 

Honorius of Autun in 1130 writes: 'The sub- 
cingulum, also called perizona or subcinctorium, is 
hung doubled about the loins ; this signifies zeal 
in almsgiving,' etc. 

Note, in this passage, the expression ' hung 
doubled.' This can only refer to the ' lappets ' 
being hung one on each side. And the ' alms- 
giving,' which Honorius asserts this vestment to 
signify, suggests a purse. 

Other writers, in the century preceding Hono- 
rius, write to the same effect ; and even as early 
as the tenth century, in a manuscript of the mass, 
w^e find a distinction drawn between the ' cingu- 
lum ' and the ' baltheum ' in the prayers said while 

In short, it seems probable that the subcingu- 
lum, with its appendages, is, like several other 
sacerdotal vestments, a modification into an orna- 
ment of something which had been designed for 
some natural requirement. When the maniple 
became too narrow and too richly embroidered to 
be of the slightest use as a handkerchief, it cannot 
be supposed that the priest did entirely without 
some resource ; some plain piece of cloth must surely 

1 1 o Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

have been employed in its place, and some pocket 
must then have been required in which to place it. 
Again, some receptacle must have been wanted in 
which to place those comforting metal ' apples ' in 
which hot water was placed when the day was 
cold ; and the thumbstall or ponser, the thimble 
designed to keep the oil which adhered to his 
thumb after it had been dipped in the chrism, 
from greasing any of his vestments. It seems only 
natural to suppose that the subcingulum was 
originally designed to supply fhese wants. 

XII. The Rational. — This ornament, obsolete 
now, was assumed by the bishops of the early 
years of the middle ages, in direct imitation of the 
breastplate of the ephod worn by the Jewish High 

It consisted of a wooden brooch, overlaid with 
enamelled metal, which was fastened high up on 
the breast of the chasuble, and seems commonly 
to have been worn when there was no central 
orphrey on that vestment. 

The shape and ornamentation of the rational 
varied altogether with the caprice of the artist 
who designed it. Examples are extremely rare in 
inventories of cathedral goods, if, indeed, they occur 
at all. It is probable that they were catalogued 
together with the morses of copes, with which 
they were practically identical in appearance. 

The word * Rationale ' first meets us in the 

T^he Final Form of Vestments, 1 1 1 

expression 'rationale judicii/ used in the Vulgate 
-passim as a translation of the ro \o^{iov rr]q KpiaewQ, 
by which the Septuagint expressed the breastplate 
of the ephod. In the early Church writers the 
word 'judicii' was dropped and 'rationale' used 
alone, but always to denote the Jewish ornament. 
When pseudo-Alcuin wrote, in the tenth or 
eleventh century, the ecclesiastical rational was 
quite unknown, for he says : ' Pro rationali summi 
pontifices, quos archiepiscopos dicemus, pallio 
utuntur' — a statement which he would certainly 
not have made if anything less unlike the rational 
than the pallium had been known to him. Ivo of 
Chartres, too, knows nothing of the Christian 
ornament, for although he does not say definitely 
that the Jewish rational corresponded to the 
pallium, he says that it corresponded to an orna- 
ment conceded {concessum) to the chief bishops of 
his time — an expression which would define the 
pallium, but certainly not the rational. Honorius 
of Autun is the writer in whom we first meet with 
direct and unequivocal mention of the ornament ; 
and he begins his remarks upon it by definitely 
stating : ' Rationale a Lege est sumptum '—Lege, 
of course, being the Levitical law. This gives us 
very closely the limits of date between which the 
rational was assumed — some time between iioo 
and 1 1 30. 

The rational, if we may accept the testimony 

112 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

of the monuments, gradually died out about the 
fourteenth or fifteenth century. It seems never to 
have been universal, and an actual rational is one 
of the rarest ecclesiological treasures a collector 
can possess. 

Xlll. The Mitre. — Like that of the subcingu- 
lum, the history of the mitre is a curious piece of 
evolution ; but, unlike the suhcingulum^ the mitre 
can be traced through all its history in an un- 
broken chain of literary references, monumental 
effigies, and actual specimens. 

The word 7nitra (Gk. /iiVoc, ci thread^ is applied 
in the transitional period to a female head-dress, 
and even St Isidore of Seville makes use of the 
word in that sense. The Septuagint, however, 
occasionally translates the expression for the cap 
of the high priest by ^aV^a ; at other times they 
use the word Ac/Soptc, which they also apply to the 
cap of the second order of the Jewish priesthood. 
The Vulgate follows the Septuagint, sometimes 
using mitra^ sometimes cidaris^ and occasionally 

The advocates of an origin in primitive anti- 
quity for Ecclesiastical Vestments make much of 
two passages which are certainly obscure, and 
would seem to indicate that in apostolic times 
' bishops ' wore a gold -plate upon their heads. 
These passages are in a letter sent by Polycrates of 
Ephesus to Victor, bishop of Rome, about the 

'The Final Form of Vestments, 1 1 3 

year 200 a.d., in which he alludes to St John as 
'* having become a priest wearing the gold plate ' 
iyevi]Or] up^vg to 7reTa\ov 7re(j>of)r]fC0JQ ;* and in the 
writings of Epiphanius of Salamis (circa 400 a.d.), 
in which he says of James, the brother of Our 
Lord, that he was a priest after the ancient rite, 
and was permitted to wear a gold plate — hparev- 
(jai'Ta auTOi' Kara rrjv iraXaitiv Upuxjvvi] evpOjLUv . . . 
Ka\ TO TreTaXov eirl rfyg K£(paXr}Q £$^7^ civtm (pEpeiu^'T Cltmg 
the authority of Eusebius, Clement, and others. 
These statements are so hopelessly vague and 
confused that very little can be made out of them, 
but it has been pointed out that (i) the passages 
in which they occur are largely allegorical, (ii) 
that the iriTaXov seems to refer to the gold plate of 
Jewish priesthood, and that the expression ' priest 
with the iriTaXov ' probably was used currently in 
the early years of Christianity, much as ' mitred 
abbot ' is by us at the present day. In any case, 
as Dr Sinker says,J it ' is plain enough that if St 
John and St James, or either of them, did wear 
this ornament, it was an ornament ' special to 
themselves and ceased with them, affecting in no 
sense the further use of the church.' 

* Ap. Eusebius, Hist. Eccl., v 24. ; Migne, Patrol. 
Graec, xx 493. 

t Contra Haer., I xxix 4 ; Migne, Patrol. Graec, 
xli 396. 

X In Smith and Cheetham's 'Dictionary of Christian 
Antiquities,' s.v. r/!/tre. 

114 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Other passages, supposed to refer to this or 
similar practices, bearing dates between the fourth 
and sixth centuries, are found on examination to 
have no real bearing on the question. The 
number of extracts from writers of that time which 
have been brought forward to prove the antiquity 
of the mitre is considerable ; but those which can 
at all bear consideration apart from their contexts 
are all vague, unconvincing and inconclusive ; some, 
indeed, are so obviously figurative that their pro- 
duction is only an amusing illustration of the 
straits to which the believers in the elaboration of 
primitive ritual are reduced. And the evidence of 
Tertullian on the other side is very clear — ' quis 
denique patriarches, quis prophetes, quis levites, 
aut sacerdos, aut archon, quis vel postea apostolus 
aut evangelizator aut episcopus invenitur coro- 

In the face of this quotation it is not easy to see 
what to make of the passages in St Jerome and 
elsewhere, in which a bishop is addressed by the 
expression * corona vestra,* much as we use the 
words * your lordship ' now. Dr Rock argues 
from this that bishops, even so early as the fifth 
century, wore a circlet or crown of gold at Divine 
service. If so, the use must have been confined 
to Rome, for otherwise the Toletan or other 

* *De Corona Milids,' cap. ix. Migne, ii 88. 

The Final Form of Vestments, 1 1 5 

councillors would surely have given us definite 
information concerning it. 

St Isidore of Seville, in his treatise ' De Officiis 
Ecclesiasticis,' book ii, chap, vii, describes the 
tonsure as indicative of the priesthood and the 
regal nature of the church, the shaven part of the 
head representing the hemispherical cap of the 
Jewish priests, and the circlet of hair representing 
the coronet of kings. It is true that he is not 
speaking definitely of bishops, but the fact that he 
is absolutely silent respecting a crown of any 
kind other than the crown of hair — for which he 
expressly uses the word corona — is at least pre- 
sumptive evidence that the crown of gold was not 
worn in his day. The prophecy of King Laog- 
haire's druids affords a very curious corroboration 
of this; sttpost, p. 128. 

The earliest representation that Dr Rock can 
adduce of an ecclesiastic wearing this circlet is a 
figure in the Benedictional of St Aethelwold, an 
MS. of the tenth century at Chatsworth. Here 
we have a figure, the brows of which are certainly 
encircled with a gold band set with precious 
stones. As Marriott points out, however, this is 
probably more of a secular than an ecclesiastical 
nature, and may indicate the royal rank to which 
bishops at that time frequently laid claim. 

Menard, after a careful study of ancient 
liturgies, came to the conclusion that the mitre 

1 1 6 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

was not in use in the church prior to the year 
looo. Contemporary art bears out this statement. 
Probably the earliest genuine representation of a 
bishop wearing a head-dress to which any import- 
ance can be attached from a liturgical point of 
view is an illumination of St Dunstan* in an MS. 
(Claud. A 3) in the British Museum. This 
is of the early years of the eleventh century. It 
shows us a simple cap, low and hemispherical in 
shape, without the least trace of the cleft now in- 
variably associated with the episcopal headgear. 

The fashion seems to have changed with con- 
siderable rapidity, and the cleft very soon began to 
make its appearance. Its first beginning was a 
very shallow, blunt depression between two low, 
blunt, rounded points, one over each ear — in fact, 
a depression such as would naturally be made in a 
soft cloth cap by passing the outstretched hand 
gently across the crown. This change was not 
long in giving place to another and more impor- 
tant modification. The mitre was turned so 
that the horns appeared one in front, one behind, 
and they were raised a little higher than before, 
and, instead of being rounded, were made of a 
triangular form. The mitre in this shape is that 
universally represented in MSS. of the twelfth 

Little difference in shape is traceable in the 
* See fig. 11, p. 97. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 1 1 7 

mitres of the thirteenth, fourteenth, fifteenth or 
sixteenth centuries. During these four hundred 
years the mitre increased considerably in size, but 

Fig 16 -\ Bishop, Salisbury Fig. 17.-AN Archbishop; 

^CATHEDRAL (Jocelyn, Twelfth ^-^^^^^.''^IZ'^ll? 

Century). ther von Isenburg, 1482). 

it was reserved for the seventeenth century to 
stereotype the final modification in form. Hitherto 
the two horns of the mitre had as a general rule 

1 1 8 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

been in the shape of plain triangles, bent round so 
as to adapt themselves to the outline of the head ; 
the mitre was thus cylindrical in outline. By the 
seventeenth century, however, the triangles had 
been made spherical, so that the mitre assumed the 
form of a pair of parentheses, or of a barrel, which 
it still possesses.* By this time it had grown to a 
considerable height — some eighteen inches. 

When the mitre was a plain cloth cap it was 
kept in position by two ribbons, which were 
knotted at the back of the head. The end of 
these ribbons are well shown in the figure of St 
Dunstan. But the ribbons very early lost their 
usefialness and became simple ornaments, and the 
ubiquitous embroiderer was not long in seizing on 
these infulae, or lappets, and enriching them with 
needlework to the best of her ability. 

The mitre was originally made of plain white 
linen, and until about the twelfth century continued 
to be so ; it was occasionally, though by no means 
always, elaborately decorated with needlework. 
Such simplicity, however, was not consistent with 
the spirit of the age which followed, and we find 
that in the thirteenth century the mitre was made of 
silk, and invariably overlaid either with embroidery 

'■'' Traces of a slight * bulge ' are discernible in a few 
examples of even so early a date as the fifteenth century. It 
is well developed in von Brandenburg's effigy, figured on 
p. lOI. 

The Final Form of Vestments. 1 1 9 

or pearls and other jewels. To such a length was 
this enrichment carried at last in England, that 
we read that Henry VIII removed from Foun- 
tains Abbey, among other treasures, a silver-gilt 
mitre set with pearl and stone — weight seventy 

ounces ! 

Although properly belonging to the seventh 
chapter, in which the ritual uses of the various 
vestments which we have been describing will be 
discussed, it is necessary here to detail the three 
classes into which mitres are divided. Unlike 
other vestments, which are classified accordmg to 
the particular liturgical colour which predominates 
in their embroidery, mitres are classified accordmg 
to the manner in which they are ornamented. 
The background, when it can be seen at all, is 
white. A mitre which is simply made of white 
linen or silk, with little or no enrichment, is called 
a mitra simplex ; one ornamented richly with 
embroidery, but without precious metals or stones, 
is called a mitra aurifrigiata ; and one in which 
precious metals and stones are employed in its 
decoration is called a mitra pretiosa. The different 
times at which these different kinds of mitres are 
worn will be noted in their proper place in 
Chapter VII. 

The papal tiara may be briefly described in this 
place. It first appears about the eleventh century 
as a conical cap, encircled with a single crown at 

Fig. iS. — Pastoral Staff and Mitra 
Pretiosa (the Limerick Mitre). 

The Final Form of Vestments. 121 

the brow ; assumed about the time of the growth 
of the earthly power of the papacy, it may well be 
regarded as symbolical of spiritual and temporal 
rule. The subsequent modifications through 
which it passed were few in number, though con- 
siderable in character : they consisted in the addi- 
tion of a second crown by Boniface VIII (1300 
A.D.), of a third by Urban V (1362-70), and the 
swelling out of the body of the head-dress into a 
bulging form about the sixteenth century, much 
about the time when the mitre assumed the same 

XIV. '[he Episcopal Gloves. — These un- 
doubtedly owe their invention to the coldness and 
cheerlessness of the early churches, and were in- 
vented simply to keep the hands of the wearer 
warm. But about the ninth century they, with so 
many similar vestments, assumed a more sacred 
character, anci a prayer was prescribed for putting 
them on, as was the case with the other and better 
established vestments. They do not appear to be 
formally mentioned as vestments till the time of 
Honorius of Autun, who draws moral lessons 
from them. 

Throughout the middle ages the gloves were 
richly embroidered and jewelled ; often a large 
stone is to be seen on the back of each hand. 

The gloves (cldrothecae^ or manicae) must be 
carefully distinguished from the manicae or 

122 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

brachialia^ the sleeves of coarse cloth which the 
bishop used to draw over his arm to protect the 
apparels of his alb from the water when administer- 
ing baptism by immersion. 

As the hands are sometimes covered with gloves 
and sometimes bare, so good deeds should be 
sometimes hidden to prevent self-sufficiency, and 
sometimes revealed as an edifying example to those 
near us. So says Honorius of Autun ; perhaps 
this is as satisfactory an exegesis as has ever been 
given of the gloves or any other vestment. 

XV. The E-pis copal %jng. — Although, as we 
have seen, the ring was recognised as one of the 
special marks of a bishop at the time of the fourth 
council of Toledo, and was regarded by St 
Isidore of Seville as a special article used in the 
investiture of a bishop, none of the liturgical 
writers of the earliest years of the mediaeval period 
notices it ; not till we come to Honorius of 
Autun is any mention of it to be found. The 
reason of this is not far to seek, and has been 
given by Marriott. Rabanus, Amalarius, Ivo, 
and the rest, occupied themselves more or less 
with the supposed connexion between the liturgical 
and the Jewish vestments, and therefore, as they 
were not writing treatises dealing solely with 
Christian vestments, they omitted all mention of 
ornaments which had no direct bearing on the 
questions with which they were engaged. Hence, 

'The Final Form of Vestments, 1 2 3 

both the ring and pastoral staff suffered, as the 
most ingenious torturing could not extract any- 
thing in the Levitical rites analogous to these im- 
portant insignia. 

The evidence of the monuments is conclusive on 
two points. First, that the episcopal ring proper 
was only one of a large number of rings worn by 
the bishop, the others being probably purely 
ornamental and secular ; second, that it was worn 
on the third finger of the right hand, and above 
the second joint of that finger, not being passed, 
as rings are now, down to the knuckle. It was 
usually kept in place with a plain guard ring. 

The ring was always a circlet with a precious 
stone, never engraved, and it was large enough to 
pass over the gloved finger. The stone was 
usually a sapphire, sometimes an emerald or a 

Although the ring is distinguishable, by its 
position on the right hand as well as by other 
circumstances, from the wedding-ring, Honorius 
of Autun (after referring to the ring placed on 
the finger of the Prodigal Son and the wedding 
ring of iron with an adamantine stone forged 
by * a certain wise man called Prometheus ') has 
been trapped into saying that the bishop wears a 
ring that he may declare himself the bridegroom 
of the church and may lay down his life for it, 
should necessity arise, as did Christ. 

124 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

XVI. The Pastoral Slaff.—Wt have briefly 
sketched the probable origin of the pastoral staff 
in the preceding chapter, and come now to discuss 
the forms it presented and the connexions in 
which it was used during the middle ages. As 
there is no department of the study of Ecclesias- 
tical Vestments about v/hich so much popular 
misconception exists, it will be necessary to enter 
into these details at considerable length. 

As utterly unfounded as the common notions 
concerning ' low-side windows ' and crossed-legged 
effigies is the idea that the differences in the 
positions of pastoral staves as represented in 
sculptured monuments have any meaning whatso- 
ever, secret or personal. A pastoral staff remains 
a pastoral staff, and nothing more, whether it 
is on the right side of the bearer or on the 
left, and whether its crook is turned inwards or 

Synonymous with ' pastoral staff' is the word 
crozier or crosier ; but it is frequently ignorantly 
applied to a totally different object — the cross- 
staff borne before an archbishop. The statements 
which we so often see in works professing to treat 
on ecclesiological subjects as to the pastoral staff 
being crook-headed and borne by bishops, the 
crozier cross-headed, and borne (instead of the 
pastoral staff) /?y archbishops, are derived from a 
misunderstanding of the evidence of mediaeval 

'The Final Form of Vestments, 125 

monuments.* The truth is, that the pastoral 
staff, with which the crozier is identical, is borne 
by bishops and archbishops alike ; but archbishops 
are distinguished from bishops by having a staff, 
with a cross or crucifix in its head, borne hefore 
them in addition. In many monuments, it is 
true, archbishops are represented as carrying the 
cross-staff, as, for instance, the brass of Arch- 
bishop Cranley in New College, Oxford ; but it 
was obviously impossible in a monument of this 
kind to represent a cross-bearer preceding the 
archbishop, and the slight inaccuracy was, there- 
fore, perpetrated of making the archbishop bear 
his own cross, thereby substantiating the evidence 
of the fall^ that the person represented was of 
higher rank than that of a bishop. It was better 
managed at Mayence, where, in the monument 
of Albrecht von Brandenburg, 1545, figured 
above (p. loi), the figure is represented as bearing 
both the crozier and the cross-staff, one in each 
hand ; and at Bamberg, in the cathedral of which 
city is a brass to Bishop Lambert von Brunnf 
(1399), wherein he is represented holding the 
crozier in his left hand, the cross-staff in his 

* This blunder has even crept into the ninth edition of 
the * Encyclopaedia Britannica.' 

t The bishops of Bamberg had a right to wear the archi- 
episcopal pontificalia. See p. 102, afite. 

126 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

In the earliest representations of a staff of office 
there is a considerable variety in the shape of the 
head ; knobs, crooks, and even Y -shapes, all meet 
us. The shape probably depended on the shape 
of the branch of the tree from which the staff was 
cut, much as does the shape of an ordinary walk- 
ing-stick. By St Isidore's time, however, the 
crook-head had become stereotyped ; the number 
of exceptional forms which we find after that date 
is small. There is a considerable number of staves 
of about the eleventh century, either represented 
on monuments or actually existing, of which the 
heads are tau-shaped ; these possibly betray 
Eastern influence. A few effigies or pictures of 
bishops remain with a knob-headed staff ; an 
example is to be seen in a ninth-century Anglo- 
Saxon pontifical at Rouen. 

The crook-headed staff is, however, by far the 
commonest, and after the eleventh century the 
p only, form in which the bishop's crozier is 
found. Some variety is discoverable in the 
extent to which the staff is crooked. In some 
— notably in Irish specimens — the head is 
shaped like an inverted U, the form of the whole 
staff being that represented in the annexed diagram; 
but in the great majority of instances the head is 
recurved into a spiral or volute. 

In the Irish form of crozier the front is flat, and 
shaped like an oval shield. This is often move 

The Final Form of Vestments, 127 

able, disclosing a hollow behind it, which was 
almost certainly used as a reliquary.* 

The materials of which the pastoral staff was 
made were very diverse. The stick was of wood, 
usually some precious wood, such as cedar, cypress, 
or ebony. This wood was often gilt or overlaid 
with silver plates. In the twelfth century the 
staff was shod with iron and surmounted with a 
knob of crystal, above which the crook proper 
was attached. The crook-head of the Irish crozier 
was of bronze ; that of the other form generally 
of carved ivory. When the process of elaboration 
was felt in this as in all the other sacerdotal orna- 
ments, the stick as well as the head was often 
carved from ivory, and either gilt or silvered 
heavily, and set with precious stones. Beneath 
the crook were often niches or shrines, containing 
figures of saints. 

The bronze Irish crozier was decorated with the 
marvellous interlacing knots and bands which are 
the special glory of early Irish Christian art. On 
the flat front is often to be seen a plain cross, at 
the centre of which is a setting for a precious 
stone, and in each quarter an interlacing band. 
In the volute form of crozier a different style of 
ornamentation was adopted ; the surface was not 

* The ordinary form of crozier was not unknown in 
Ireland ; the well-known crozier of Cashel is a beautiful 
specimen. The crook form was, however, earlier. 

128 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

ornamented, but the head was carved into solid 
forms ; in the centre of the volute was usually 
represented some sacred person or scene, real or 
legendary, or else some symbolical device or con- 
ventional patterns. It is hard to say which of 
these two forms of crozier is the better from an 
aesthetic point of view. The graceful curve of 
the volute certainly compares favourably with the 
somewhat stiff outline of the Irish crozier ; but 
the feebleness of even the best mediaeval attempts 
at representing the human figure in miniature 
considerably detracts from the artistic value of 
the volute crozier when a human figure is intro- 
duced ; while, on the other hand, the incomparable 
excellence of the Irish metal-workers transformed 
the U-shaped crozier into an object of great beauty. 
The lines of the knots are always faultlessly exe- 
cuted, and the ornamentation is invariably in good 

* This form of crozier is no doubt contemplated in the 
prophecy attributed to the druids of Laoghaire, King of 
Ireland, as cited in the law- tract known as the Senckus Mor — 
* Tiucfaid Tailginn tar muir meirginn 

A croinn cromcinn, a cinn tollcinn 

A miasa in airthiur atighe,' etc. — 
that is, ' the Tonsured ones shall come through the stormy 
sea, their staves crook-headed, their heads tonsured, their 
tables in the east of their houses,' etc. It is worth noting, 
apropos of what was said on p. 115 respecting the bishop's 
coro?2a, that the words 'a cinn tollcinn' — 'their heads 
tonsured,' are thus glossed in the MS. — '.i. a coirne ina 
cennaib' — 'i.e., their crowns on their heads.' 

The Final Form of Vestments, 129 

The following copy of the Lincoln Inventory 
of pastoral staves (1536) illustrates some of the 
points already noticed. It also indicates that the 
head and staff of the crozier were separable, and, 
when stored in the vestry, kept apart from one 
another : 

* In primis a hede of one busshopes stafFe of sylver and 
gylte w' one knop and perles & other stones havyng a Image 
of ow"" savyow'' of the one syde and a Image of sent John 
Baptiste of the other syde wanting xxj stones & perles vv* one 
bose [boss] and one sokett weyng xviij unces. 

*Item one other hede of a stafFe copo^ & gylte. 

* Item a staffe ordend for one of the seyd hedes the vvyche 
ys ornate w' stones sylver and gylte and iij circles, a boute 
the StafFe sylver and gylte wantyng vij stones. 

* Item a stafFe of horn and wod for the hede of copo'. 

* Item j staff covered w' silver w^^out hceid.' 

In the corresponding inventory of Winchester 
Cathedral we find entered three pastoral staves 
silver-gilt, one pastoral staff of a * unicorn's ' 
(presumably a narwhal's) horn and four pastoral 
staves of plates of silver. 

Suspended to the top of the staff was a streamer 
or napkin, which, like the lappet of the mitre, was 
called the infula. This was originally introduced 
to keep the moisture of the hand from tarnishing 
the metal of the staff. The symbolists think it is 
a ' banner ' of some sort or other. 

It will be convenient, before proceeding to the 
discussion of the next vestment on our list, to give 



Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

a few particulars regarding the archbishop's cross. 
This is necessary owing to the confusion already- 
noticed, which exists between the crozier and the 
cross ; but as the cross cannot strictly be included 
in a catalogue of ecclesiastical vestments, we shall 
make our notes as brief as possible. 

The custom of preceding an archbishop with 
a cross was introduced throughout the Western 
Church about the beginning of the twelfth century. 
It was carried by one of the archbishop's chap- 
lains, who in this country received the name of 
* croyser,' or cross-bearer, for that reason. The 
cross was usually richly ornamented with metal- 
work and jewels, and often, if not always, bore a 
figure of Our Lord on each face, so that the eyes 
of the archbishop were fixed on the one, those of 
the people on the other. 

The circumstance of highest importance con- 
nected with the archbishop's cross, so far as it 
concerns our present purpose, is this : the prelate 
never bore the cross himself, except on the one 
occasion of his investiture. He then received the 
cross into his own hands, but immediately passed 
it on to his cross-bearer. 

The Pope is often in mediaeval monuments and 
illustrations represented as preceded by a cross 
with three transoms of different length, the upper- 
most being the shortest, the lowermost the longest. 
This is simply the result of a desire on the part of 

The Final Form of Vestments. 1 3 1 

the artist to improve upon the patriarch's cross of 
the Eastern Church, which appears to have two 
transoms, the upper transom being in point of fact 
a representation of the board on which the super- 
scription on the cross was written. 

One more staff may be worth a passing men- 
tion — the staff borne as an emblem of authority 
by the ruler of the choir, who looked after the 
singing and behaviour of the boys. This was of 
silver, with a cross-head. 

The false conceptions about the crozier have 
probably arisen from an inaccurate etymological 
analogy with the word cross. The true derivation 
connects it with such words as our crotchet and 

The symbolism of the shepherd's staff is naturally 
the leading thought in the minds of the mystics. 
It was probably, however, considered too obvious, 
and they cast about to find yet further secret 
meanings. Thus, Honorius notices that the Lord 
commanded the apostles to ' take nothing save a 
staff only ' when they were going out to preach, 
and then says that ' the staff which sustains the 
feeble signifies the authority of teaching,' and 
much more to the same effect. Innocent III says 
that the point is sharp, the middle straight, the 
top curved, to indicate that the priest should spur 
on the idle, rule the weak, collect the wandering. 
He flirther explains the fact that the Pope does 

132 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

not bear the pastoral staff by telling us that ' the 
blessed St Peter sent his staff to Eucharius, the 
first bishop of Treves, whom he had sent, to- 
gether with Valerius and Maternus, to preach the 
Gospel among the Germans. Maternus succeeded 
him in the bishopric ; he had been raised from the 
dead by the staff of St Peter. And this staff is 
preserved with great reverence in the church of 
Treves.' St Thomas Aquinas supplements this 
piece of information by telling us that for this 
reason the Pope carries the pastoral staff when 
pontificating in Treves."^ 

The episcopal staff is alleged to have borne the 
following inscriptions : round the crook, * Cum 
iratus fueris misericordiae recordaberis ' ; on the 
ball below the crook, ' Homo ' ; on the spike at the 
bottom, * Parce.' By these inscriptions the bishop 
was warned that he was but a man himself ; that 
in wrath he should remember mercy ; and that he 
should spare, even when administering discipline. 
Whether these warnings were invariably effective 
is a matter into which we will not inquire. 

XVII. The Tunicle. — This was simply a small 
variety of the dalmatic, appropriated to the use of 
subdeacons and bishops. 

It differed from the dalmatic merely in being 
somewhat smaller. It was made of silk or of 

* Sentent. IV, dist. 24, quaest. 3, art. 3, ad jin. ed. Parmae 
(1873), vol. vii, p. 913. 

The Final Form of Vestments, 1 3 3 

wool, and first appears about the year 820 as a 
subdeacon's vestment ; but it is considerably later 
than this that it appears as a bishop's garment. 
In the ninth century bishops appear with but 
one vestment — the alba — under the chasuble; 
between the ninth and eleventh centuries the 
dalmatic makes its appearance ; and it is not till 
about 1200 that we find the tunicle illustrated 
in paintings or effigies of bishops. A reference 
to the table given in the early part of the present 
chapter will show that the literary evidence points 
in the same direction. 

The tunicle did not escape the common fate of 
all the vestments of the mediaeval church, and it, 
too, became overlaid with needlework, first in a 
strip across the breast of the subdeacon, then (as 
this would not show under the vestments of the 
bishop) on the rest of the surface. The tunicle on 
Bishop Goodrick's brass at Ely Cathedral— one of 
the latest representations of this vestment in Eng- 
land— is as richly embroidered as the dalmatic. 

In a few episcopal effigies of the thirteenth 
century the dalmatic alone appears. The tunicle 
being worn beneath the dalmatic, and being 
naturallv smaller, was hidden. This difficulty was, 
however, very soon surmounted by the simple pro- 
cess of shortening the dalmatic. 

Properly, the dalmatic only is fringed; the 
tunicle of the subdeacon seldom, if ever, shows 

134 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

this manner of ornamentation. But in the later 
episcopal effigies it is by no means uncommon. 

XVIII. The Orale^ or, as it is now called, the 
Fanon^ is described by Dr Rock as ' an oblong 
piece of white silk gauze of some length, striped 
across its width with narrow bars, alternately gold, 
blue, and red. ... It is cast upon the head of 
the Pope like a hood, and its two ends are wrapped 
one over the right, the other over the left shoulder, 
and thus kept until the holy father is clad in the 
chasuble, when the fanon is thrown back and made 
to hang smoothly and gracefully above and all 
around the shoulders of that vestment, like a 

From the orale being supposed to represent the 
ephod, as well as from the manner of its being put 
on, it is probable that it was an evolution from 
the amice. It is not mentioned by liturgical 
writers before Innocent III, and does not appear in 
paintings or monuments of much older date ; it 
therefore seems to have been assumed about the 
twelfth or thirteenth century. 

XIX. The Pectoral Cross. — We must not omit 
to mention this important episcopal ornament. 
As an official ornament it is of comparatively 
late introduction ; it first appears in the pages 
of Innocent III and Durandus, and from the 
references which these liturgiologists make to it, 
it was evidently regarded by them as exclusively 

The Final Form of Vestments. 1 3 5 

confined to the Pope's use. Thus, Innocent says : 
'Romanus autem pontifex post albam et cingu- 
lum assumit orale, quod circa caput involvit et 
replicat super humeros' for certain symbohc 
reasons ; ' et quia signo crucis auri lamina cessit 
pro lamina quam pontifex ille [Judaeus] gerebat 
in fronte, pontifex iste crucem gerit in pectore.' 
Dr Rock has been unable to find any trace of 
the pectoral cross appearing on the breast of an 
ordinary bishop before the sixteenth century. 
Even by the Popes it appears before this time 
to have been covered by the chasuble. Probably 
the cross was originally a reliquary. 

On p. 29 we referred to a MS. of uncertain 
date in the monastery of St Martin at Autun, 
which details the vestments worn in the Galilean 
church in (probably) the tenth century. This 
gives a somewhat different catalogue from the lists 
of the rest of the Western Church, and displays 
some Eastern influence. The pallium, casula, alba, 
and stola are described so that they appear iden- 
tical with the corresponding vestments elsewhere ; 
the maniple also appears, under the name vesti- 
mentum parvolum ; and we have in addition the 
mamalia or manicae, which do not appear in any 
other Western lists ; they are said in the MS. 
to have been regularly worn 'like bracelets,' 
and to have covered the arms of ' kings and 
priests.' This points to vestments after the style 

136 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

of the tTTijiiaviKia of the Greeks, which will be 
noticed in their proper place in Chapter V. 

We have now described the vestments worn by 
the priests of the Western Church at the Euchar- 
istic service, and are thus in a position to give a satis- 
factory answer to the question, * Were they adap- 
tations of the Jewish, or natural evolutions of the 
Roman costume?' We have seen that the jeweller, 
the goldsmith, and the embroiderer conspired to 
make the vestments of the middle ages as gorgeous 
as possible, and that therein, and in some few other 
particulars, they resembled the Mosaic costume ; 
but as we go back nearer and nearer to the first 
ages of Christianity all the glitter drops off, 
vestment after vestment disappears, till we reach 
the three plain white vestments of the fourth 
century, from which it is but a step to the ordi- 
nary costume of a Roman citizen of good position 
during the second or third century of our era. 
We have also seen that all attempts at drawing 
hidden meanings from the vestments fail ; the 
results, when not far-fetched, are contradictory 
and unconvincing. 



IN addition to the garments already described, 
which are more properly appropriated to the 
Eucharistic service, there are a few which 
are assumed on other occasions by the clergy of 
the Western Church. The occasions upon which 
these particular vestments are worn belong properly 
to the province of Chapter VII. We accordingly 
postpone the discussion of them until that chapter 
is reached, concerning ourselves here with the 
development, shape, and ornamentation of the 
vestments themselves. 

The vestments which we have to describe in 
this chapter are the cassock, surplice (with its 
modifications, the rochet and cotta), almuce, and 
cope. These constitute the so-called processional 

138 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

vestments ; a misnomer, because they are not ex- 
clusively appropriated to processions. There are, 
besides, certain others of a more general character, 
not strictly falling under the head of either Euchar- 
istic or Processional vesture, and they will be more 
conveniently described in this chapter also. These 
are the canon's cope, the mozetta, the Roman 
collar, and the various types of sacerdotal head- 

I. The Cassock, — The cassock was the long 
outer gown which was worn by everyone, clerical 
and lay, male and female, during the eleventh, 
twelfth, and succeeding centuries. When it was 
abandoned for the very much more convenient 
short coat, that conservatism in ecclesiastical 
matters, to which the very existence of ecclesi- 
astical vestments is due, prevented the clergy from 
following the example of the laity, and left the 
cassock as the distinctive outer garment of the 
clergy on ordinary occasions, as it still remains. 
The dignity attaching to a long garment was also 
probably a factor in causing its ecclesiastical re- 

The Eucharistic vestments were placed over the 
cassock, as the cassock was placed over the under- 
garments of the wearer. But it was so entirely 
concealed by the long alb that it could scarcely 
be regarded as an essential part of the vestments 
for the Eucharistic office. The case was different. 

History of the Processional Vestments. 139 

however, when the priest was vested in proces- 
sional attire, for the lower end of the cassock 
appeared very prominently under the surplice, 
and its presence was consequently essential to 
complete the processional outfit. We therefore 
discuss this vestment under the head ' Processional ' 
rather than under the head * Eucharistic/ 

Cassocks were originally invented for purposes 
of warmth, and hence were lined with furs. This 
custom was retained when the cassock became 
exclusively a clerical dress, and we often find in 
monuments of ecclesiastics indications at the wrist 
that the cassock was so lined. The colour of 
the vestment was invariably black for ordinary 
ecclesiastics, scarlet for doctors of divinity and 
cardinals, purple for bishops and prelates, and on 
high occasions for acolytes ; for the Pope, white. 
The fur with which the cassock was lined was 
ermine or some other precious kind for digni- 
taries ; but ordinary priests were strictly forbidden 
to wear anything more costly than sheepskin. 
The cassock as we find it represented on mediaeval 
monuments was probably open to the breast ; I 
do not recollect having observed any counterpart 
to the modern cassock, with a row of buttons from 
neck to hem (humorously compared by Lord 
Grimthorpe to a boiler with a close row of rivets!). 
In some parts of France and in Rome the cassock 
is kept in place by a sash ; this also is a modern 

140 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

innovation probably suggested by the custom of 
members of the monastic orders. 

II. The Surplice. — From its fur lining, the 
cassock was called in mediaeval Latin the pellicea ; 
the name superpellicea was accordingly given to 
the vestment which was worn immediately over it 
— a name which has passed by natural phonetic 
modifications into * surplice.' 

It will be remembered that the alba of the 
second or transitional epoch was a very much more 
ample vestment than its successor in mediaeval 
times. The chasuble, tunicle, or dalmatic (some- 
times all three) had to be put on over it — an im- 
possibility if it had maintained its original size. 
It accordingly was contracted in size in order to 
adapt itself to the new requirements ; but in so 
doing the needleworkers went to the other ex- 
treme, and produced a vestment which threatened 
to become intractable every time the attempt was 
made to put it on over the cassock when the latter 
article of dress was thick and lined with fur. 
These difficulties resulted in the invention of a 
new garment, which retained the amplitude of the 
old alba^ and was worn only when no vestment of 
importance (except the cope, which was adaptable) 
was put on over it. This was the surplice. The 
alb was retained for the Eucharistic service, as 
the upper vestments would lie over it more con- 

History of the Processional Vestments. 141 

The surplice was a sleeved vestment of white 
linen, plain, except at the neck, where there was 
occasionally a little embroidery in coloured threads. 
The sleeves were very full, and hung down to a 
considerable length when the hands were con- 
joined, as they generally are in monuments. The 
surplice was put on by being passed over the head, 
exactly like the alb ; the modern surplice, open in 
front, and secured at the neck with a button, was 
invented within the last two hundred years, and 
was designed to make the assumption of the vest- 
ment possible without disarranging the enormous 
wigs which were worn during the seventeenth and 
eighteenth centuries. 

III. The %ochet is a still further modification of 
the alb. The sleeves are reduced to a minimum 
or totally absent. It appears to have been worn, 
though not always, by choristers, and there is also 
evidence that it was the form of surplice favoured 
by bishops. Thus we read : 

' Item 8 surplices for the quere. 

* Item 3 rochets/i?r children' — Inventory of St Mary Hill, 

'Bis adiit [Richardus de Bury] summum pontificem Jo- 
hannem et recepit ab eo rochetam in loco bullae pro proximo 
episcopatu vacante ex post in Anglia.'— Will, de Chambre, 
'Continuatio Hist. Dunelmensis,' Surtees Society, 1839, 
p. 127. 

IV. The Cotta. — This is a surplice, considerably 
modified, which has the advantage of being cheap, 

142 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

and is accordingly worn as a substitute for the 
longer surplice in poor parishes. It is a sleeveless 
vestment, of crochet work or crimped linen, which 
reaches to the middle of the back. It has not an 
effective appearance. 

V. 'The Almuce^'''' which is also variously styled 
the Amys, or Amess,t was a hood lined with fur, 
and, like the cassock, designed to protect the 
priest from cold. In winter-time the churches — 
never very warm — would have been uninhabitable 
before the invention of heating stoves, had it not 
been for comforting articles of apparel such as 

It was shaped so that it could lie over the 
shoulders as a tippet, or be drawn over the head 
as a hood, and it must have been very necessary 
during the protracted services of the middle ages. 
The vestment was almost always of black cloth, as 
was the cassock ; and the fur with which it was 
lined varied in quality and colour with the degree 
of the wearer. Doctors of divinity and canons 
wore an almuce lined with gray fur, the former 

■*■ This word is a curious hybrid. The muce is the Teu- 
tonic for a cap or hood {cf. Scottish mutch, German Miitze). 
The word moxetta is connected with this. The al is the 
Arabic article, probably attached to it at some time in Spain. 

f Both objectionable terms, as they lead to confusion with 
the amice, the sound of all these words being practically 

History of the Processional Vestments. 143 

being further distinguished from the latter by the 
scarlet colour of the outside cloth ; all others wore 
ordinary dark brown fur. A singular embellish- 
ment of this vestment consisted in the addition of 
the tails of the animals from which the fur lining 
was taken sewn round the border of the vest- 

At about the year 1300 the almuce, as a hood, 
was superseded by a cap, which will be described 
in its proper place. It was therefore thrown back, 
and suffered to fall behind, somewhat after the 
fashion of the hood worn in our modern univer- 
sities. In order to prevent it from slipping off 
when in this position, it was sewn in front, so that 
an aperture was made through which the head of 
the wearer had to be passed. During the four- 
teenth century it gradually almost entirely lost its 
hood shape, and became more and more like a 
tippet, the only relic of its original form being the 
two long tails which hung in front somewhat like 
the ends of a stole, and which were doubtless the 
remains of the strings with which the original 
hood was fastened. The row of ' cattes tayles ' 
(as the Elizabethan reformers called them) was 
also retained. 

When the almuce was in position on the head, 
the fur was inside, the cloth outside. Obviously, 
when the vestment was thrown back over the 
shoulder, the fur would be outside, the cloth 

144 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

inside. This is a perfectly natural and intelligible 
transformation. Mrs Dolby, in noticing it, 
speaks of it in a most misleading manner. After 
describing the various changes which it under- 
went from hood to tippet, she says, ' By this time, 
too, what was originally the outside of the gar- 
ment had become the lining, and the fur the only 
material rendered visible,' as though some eccle- 
siastical ordinance or the freak of some clerical 
tailor had brought about this transformation. 
And Dr Rock says : ' Not the least remarkable 
thing in these changes of the "furred amys" [as 
he calls it] is, that it became, as it were, turned 
inside out.' The remarkable thing would have 
been if anything else had happened. 

At Wells Cathedral is the monument of Dean 
Huse [ob, 1305, but the tomb is a century and 
half later), on which are sculptured, besides the 
principal efBgy, a series of small figures of canons 
holding books. The almuces of these figures 
show a unique peculiarity : the tails are fastened 
together on the breast by a cord which passes 
through them and hangs down with tasselled ends. 
Mr St John Hope, in a paper in * Archaeo- 
logia,' vol. liv, p. 81, has traced the history of 
the appearance of the almuce during the thirteenth 
and fourteenth centuries by reference to sculptured 
effigies and brasses in England. From this paper 
I extract the following illustrative examples : 

History of the Processional Vestments. 145 

I. An effigy in Hereford Cathedral, circa 131 1, 
shows the almuce ' like a short cape down to the 
elbows, with long and broad pendants in front, 
and turned back round the neck like a loose, high- 
standing collar. The chief point to notice, how- 
ever, is that the vestment is quite open in front 
and not joined on the breast, showing that it was 
put on like a woman's shawl.' 

2. Another effigy in the same cathedral, circa 
1320, shows a similar arrangement with the 
addition of a large morse to fasten the almuce. 

3. In the fifteenth century, when the pendent 
tails became common, we find two brasses at 
Cobham, Kent, one showing the almuce clasped on 
the breast by a brooch, the other showing it open 
all down the front under the cope. 

4. In a drawing at New College, Oxford, 
executed about 1446, the Warden of Winchester 
College is represented in a furred almuce not open 
in front, but the Fellows who stand near him wear 
almuces laced up the front. This drawing is re- 
produced in * Archaeologia,' vol. liii, plate 14. 

5. An effigy dating from the very end of the 
fifteenth century in St Martin's, Birmingham, 
illustrates the almuce as it appeared when the cape 
was joined completely across the breast. 

To these facts we may add that as a general 
rule the two front tails in the earlier representa- 
tions of almuces have plain ends ; in those of later 


146 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

representations (from circa 1450) the tails have a 
small ornamental tassel, or tuft, attached to their 

VI. The Cope. — The cope may date back, as a 
vestment, to the ninth century, but in that form it is 
certainly not older. Before that time it was nothing 
more or less than an overcoat, which the clergy 
kept on in their cold and draughty churches or in 
open-air processions. It is represented in an Anglo- 
Saxon pontifical of circa 900 as a plain cloth vest- 
ment, fastened at the neck by a brooch or morse ; 
the shape is similar to that which we find in later 
times. The shape of the cope was very much that 
of half the chasuble. It was secured at the neck 
by a brooch, and suffered to drape on the person. 

The material, at least in mediaeval times, was silk, 
cloth of gold, velvet, or other precious stuffs. It 
was magnificently embroidered, jewelled, and en- 
riched with precious metals, the embroideries con- 
sisting either of strips along the straight edges, 
which hung down in front, or else of these strips 

History of the Processional Vestments. 147 

combined with patterns running over the entire 
surface of the vestment, or confined to the lower 
border. It is hard to say whether the cope or 
the chasuble was the richer vestment in the four- 
teenth and fifteenth centuries. 

The cope, being originally a costume for out- 
door processions, was furnished with a hood at the 
back ; but when the almuce took its place, it 
degenerated, like so many other 
vestments, or parts of vestments, 
into a mere ornamental append- 
age ; it lost its hood form (which 
would somewhat have interfered 
with the appearance of the 
almuce) and became a triangular 
flap, usually embroidered with 
some scene in sacred or legend- 
ary history. In many copes 
these hoods were absent, while 
to others there were several 
hoods, so that subjects appro- 
priate to the day could be 

hooked on. This triangular flap 

, ,, , ... Fig. 19. — Brass of 

gradually assumed curvilmear archdmacon Magnus, 

sides, till ultimately the angle ?55T[s'hoJnT''pres: 
disappeared altogether and the •'^i°"^^ r^'TT^' ^'''" 

rr o eluding hooded cope). 

flap became semicircular. 

The * morse,' or brooch, with which the cope 
was fastened, was the counterpart of the rational. 

148 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

It was made of gold or of silver, or else of wood 
overlaid with one of these metals. It was often 
enamelled and jewelled, and was of a great variety 
of shapes. 

VII. The Canons Cope, — This vestment must 
be carefully distinguished from the cafpa serica, 
or ordinary cope. It was a simple choir robe, worn 
at ordinary services, of black cloth, permanently 
sewn at the neck, though open from the breast 
downwards, so that it had to be passed over the 
head. It was not ornamented in any way, and 
probably for this reason was not popular as an 
object for treatment among manuscript illuminators 
or monument sculptors and engravers. A hood 
was appended, which usually hung on the back. 

VIII. The Mozetta. — This is a cape worn over 
the cope by the Pope, cardinals, and bishops in the 
Roman Church. It is of white fur or coloured 
silk, according to the season ; the Pope wears a 
red mozetta bordered with ermine when holding 
receptions ; canons in choir wear a black, bishops 
and (on penitential seasons) cardinals a violet 
mozetta ; on ordinary occasions cardinals wear a 
mozetta of red. The vestment is probably a 
descendant of the almuce, and kin to the chimere. 

IX. The Roman Collar. — This being an entirely 
modern vestment, is properly outside our range. 
It is an embroidered imitation of the turndown 
shirt-collar of ordinary dress. 

History of the Processional Vestments, 149 

In mediaeval monuments the throat of the 
priest is exposed, as are also those of present-day 
members of the older religious orders. Con- 
siderations of comfort and appearance have led 
to the adoption of this collar for the ordinary- 
clergy. It should be ' made/ says Mrs. Dolby, 
* of a perfectly straight piece of fine linen or 
lawn,' and * bordered on the turnover side and 
along its short ends by a neatly-stitched hem of 
half an inch. Opened out, when made, it is two 
and three-quarter inches wide ; the turndown 
should be not more than one and a half inch 
deep. . . . The Roman coJlar worn by a bishop 
is violet, that of a cardinal is scarlet.' 

X. Ecclesiastical Head-dress. — Pseudo-Alcuin 
expressly contrasts the Churches of the East and 
West in this — that the Western clergy officiated 
at the mass bareheaded, which was not the practice 
of those of the Eastern Church. This gives us 
information as to the usage of the Western Church 
at about the tenth or twelfth century. In the 
following century a cap is noticed * as one of the 
marks by which a Churchman might be known ' ;* 
and it appears in inventories, classed along with 

The use of a cap at Divine service was a matter 
of special papal permission : thus, Innocent IV 
issued an indult in 1245 ^^ ^^^ Prior and Convent 
* Rock. 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

of St Andrew's, Rochester, permitting them to 
wear caps [pileis uti) in the choir, provided that 
due reverence be observed at the gospel and the 
elevation. Two forms of cap are to be seen 
in mediaeval monuments : one a simple dome- 
shaped skull-cap, called hirettum ; the other a 
circular cap, with a point in the centre, of this 
shape ' ^ — > , which was peculiar to university- 
dignitaries. The latter is pro- 
bably the ancestor of the modern 
biretta ; and, indeed, in a brass 
of Robert Brassie in King's Col- 
lege Chapel, Cambridge (1558), 
appears a head-dress which is a 
connecting link between the two. 
The head-dress was always 
black, except for cardinals and 
a few bishops and others to whom 
the privileges of cardinals had 
been especially granted. These 
wore scarlet. 

We have reserved for the con- 

FiG. 20.— Bkass of elusion of this chapter a more 
Robert Brassie, , ., , ^ , 

detailed account of the subjects 

with which, and the manner in 

which these various articles of 

sacred apparel were decorated. 

Vestments, as represented in mediaeval sculptures 

or illuminations, the testimony of which is con- 

King's College, 
Cambridge (show- 
ing almuce and 
biretta-like cap). 

History of the Processional Vestments, 151 

firmed by the examples which actually exist, are 
not as a general rule ornamented in a haphazard 
manner over the whole surface. The ornamenta- 
tion is usually concentrated into patches of em- 
broidery or jewel-work, which are sewn on to 
certain definite places in the vestment. 

In describing the vestments singly we have 
already noticed the positions in which these 
patches of embroidery were placed. It will be 
convenient, however, to bring all these particulars 
together and briefly remind the reader of them. 

The alb was decorated with a rectangular patch 
on the breast ; another on the back ; two more 
above the lower hem, one in front, one behind ; a 
small patch on each cufF (entirely encircling the 
wrist in older examples) ; and a narrow binding 
round the neck. The patches on the hem were 
sometimes suspended loose from the belt, and the 
patches on the breast and back fastened together 
and suspended loose over the shoulders. 

The amice was decorated with a band of 
embroidery along one side, which was practically 
the only part of the vestment visible when it was 
in position. 

The stole and maniple were embroidered along 
their whole length ; they usually ended in a 
rectangular or trapezium-shaped piece of cloth, 
embroidered with a different pattern from 
that which ornamented the rest of the vestment 

152 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

(usually some form of cross), and fringed along its 
lower border. 

The dalmatic^ besides the peculiar arrangement 
of fringes already described, was ornamented with 
a series of horizontal bands of embroidered work, 
running right across the body of the vestment. 
The bishop's dalmatic was usually embroidered all 

The chasuble was almost invariably adorned 
with an edging of embroidered work, and when 
the body of the vestment was adorned it was 
usually with some of the many modifications of 
the 4^ or Y cross. 

The sandals were sometimes ornamented all 
over, sometimes decorated with a ^ cross, the 
upper part of the cross being turned towards 
the toe. 

The fall properly had no ornamentation except 
its crosses. 

The stockings were either not embroidered at all 
or richly embroidered over the whole surface. 

The rational was decorated with enamel, gold- 
smith's or jewelled work. 

The mitra simplex was decorated with little or 
no adornment ; the mitra aurifrigiata with 
embroidered work all over it ; the mitra pretiosa 
with embroidery combined with jewels and gold- 
smith's work. 

The gloves do not appear to have been con-* 

History of the Processional Vestments. 153 

spicuously ornamented. They often bore a large 
jewel set against the back of the hand. 

The tunicle was generally quite simple ; the 
bishop tunicle, however, in no wise differed from 
the dalmatic. 

Of the orale a full description has already been 
given ; we need not again refer to it. 

Passing to the Processional and other vestments, 
it will be unnecessary to mention any but the 
cope ; for, with the exception of a little trifling 
embroidered work in coloured threads round the 
neck of the surplice, none of the other vestments 
showed any ornamentation. The cope was orna- 
mented with embroidered work down the straight 
edges in front, and often round the bottom edge 
and the neck as well; often also the whole 
vestment was elaborately embroidered all over. 
The hood, too, must not be forgotten. 

For some inscrutable reason a distinction is 
drawn in name between the embroidered ornaments 
of the alb and amice and those of the remainder of 
the ecclesiastical dress. The former are called 
apparels, the latter orphreys. 

The subjects with which these vestments are 
embroidered must next engage our attention for a 
s^hort time. These fall naturally into three broad 

gi pups : 

\ Conventional and meaningless devices. 

2. Symbols or figures of Divine or beatified 

154 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

persons, or passages of Scripture and other 
religious inscriptions. 

3. Personal devices. 

The number of conventional patterns which 
meet us embroidered on ecclesiastical vestments is 
endless, and to attempt to catalogue even the most 
striking would be an undertaking the magnitude 
of which would only be equalled by its uselessness. 
A small collection of rubbings of monumental 
brasses will convince the reader of this. Floral 
devices are the most common, either in continuous 
scrolls or in repetitions and variations of the same 
pattern ; and these are found combined with 
patterns of the other two groups to fill up the 
gaps and spandrels between different figures or 
letters. But grotesque and real animals, wild 
men, and various other objects of natural history, 
all have their place ; though, if the evidence of the 
monuments be reliable, these were not so common 
in England as in the other countries which yielded 
allegiance to the Western Church. It is, of 
course, possible that some of these figures may 
have been intended as emblems of saints,* and 
others may have been heraldic ; but it is probable 

* For example, the lamb (besides its more sacred signifi- 
cance) may possibly be taken as symbolical of St Agnes, the 
dragon of St George or St Margaret, the lion of St Jerome, 
the lily, sun, moon, stars, or rose of St Mary the Virgin, md 
so on indefinitely. 

History of the Processional Vestments. 155 

that the majority of them were simply ornaments 
with no other intention beyond filHng up space 

The symbols of Divine or beatified persons are 
of more interest. These are usually found on the 
centre orphreys of the chasuble, on the edges and 
hood of the cope, on mitres, and on rationais or 
morses, the orphreys of the other vestments being 
usually conventional, floral, or animal devices. 
The hood of the cope almost invariably bore some 
emblematic or sacred device, or else some scene in 
sacred or "traditional history ; the edge of the cope 
and the centre of the chasuble often bore figures 
of saints in niches, one above another, or else 
connected scenes from the life of a saint ; while 
the rationais and morses, which were under the 
province of the enamellers (and were consequently 
more easily decorated than the embroidered vest- 
ments), usually displayed some more elaborate 
design in miniature. 

Of the greatest importance, however, are devices 
of the third order — those which display the name, 
initials, rebus, or coat-of-arms of the wearer or 
the donor of the vestment. In monuments these 
designs invariably are connected with the name 
and family of the wearer, while the personal 
^devices recorded in inventories are usually con- 
■lected with the donor. The reason is, probably, 
tjhat the vestments catalogued in inventories 

156 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

originally were made for, and worn by, the donors 
thereof ; during their lifetime the devices showed 
forth the wearers' names ; after their death, the 
names of the testators : while the monuments, 
which were supposed as nearly as possible to 
represent the persons commemorated as they 
appeared while they lived, would naturally pour- 
tray the vestments which they wore, or might 
have worn, when celebrating mass or conducting 
the other offices of church service. 

Mediaeval priests and embroiderers seem to have 
shrunk from placing these personal devices on the 
chasuble, though such ornamentation is not alto- 
gether unknown even in that most reverenced of 
vestments. Thus, at Arundel, Sussex, is a brass 
representing a priest in ecclesiastic vestments, in 
which the initials of the wearer occur on the 
chasuble. The cope, however, often shows 
initials or other designs'^ which serve to identify 
* Examples of an entire name occurring on copes are 
extremely rare. I only know of one — the brass of Thomas 
Patesley (1418), at Great Shelford, Cambridgeshire. Initials 
are common in almost every county ; rebuses not quite so 
common, though we have the famous ;z?^/>/^-leaves (alternating 
with M's) in the cope of a priest called Mapleton, as shown 
on his brass at Broadwater, Sussex ; while heraldic devices 
are fairly frequent, either as complete shields or selections 
from the charges borne by the priest's family. The brasses 
of Wm. de Fulbourne, at Fulbourne, Cambridgeshire, and of 
Thos. Aileward, at Havant, Hampshire, give us examples of 
both these methods of ornamentation. ' 

History of the Processional Vestments, i^j 

the wearer. The same chariness does not seem to 
have been felt with regard to the other Eucharistic 
vestments, possibly because they were not so ex- 
clusively appropriated to the Eucharistic service. 
Thus, at Beverley Minster there is a sculptured 
effigy of a priest whose entire stole is covered with 
a series of coats-of-arms. 

As I have already said, this group of orphrey 
patterns is of considerably greater importance than 
the other two, which cannot be regarded as other 
than mere artistic curiosities. It is generally 
possible to identify the personality of the priest 
commemorated by a monument, even if the in- 
scription be lost or defaced, when these convenient 
symbols enter into the composition of the orphreys 
on his vesture. This helps us in assigning the 
date of the monument ; and every monument of 
which we know the date exactly adds something 
to our stock of knowledge respecting the chron- 
ology of mediaeval art. 

As giving an idea of the number and variety of 
the designs employed by the embroiderers and 
enamellers to decorate the vestments of the church, 
it has been thought that the following table will not 
^be found uninteresting. It is a classified catalogue 
of the designs enumerated in a single inventory of 
a single collection of vestments, the inventory of 
the commissioners of Henry VIII, drawn up in 
1536, of the property of Lincoln Cathedral. 

158 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

It has not been considered necessary to preserve 
the uncouth spelling of the original, especially as 
some words are scarcely spelt the same way twice 
in the course of the document. Nor has it been 
thought worth while to swell the bulk of the list 
by giving details as to the parts of the vestments 
on which the various objects are represented, or the 
frequency with which those occurring more than 
once are found, the purpose of the list being 
simply to show faintly the variety of designs at 
the disposal of the embroiderer or enameller. It 
should be premised that this is by no means a 
complete list ; in many cases the inventory gives 
little or no information concerning the decoration 
of the vestment catalogued. Most probably, how- 
ever, all ornaments of interest or importance are 
here included : 

Group I 

Flowers : 

Fleurs-de-Iys (possibly heraldic). 

J . '[-possibly emblematic of St Mary the Virgin, 

Biriis and beasts, or parts thereof: 
Falcons bearing crowns of gold in their mouths; 

(probably heraldic). 

History of the Processional Vestments. 159 

Ostrich feathers. 

Black eagles. 
Miscellaneous : 

(Also a few others, properly included under 
Group II.) 

Group II 

Divine Persons : 

The Holy Trinity, 

Our Lord. 

The Majesty. 

The Holy Ghost, Crucifix, and St Mary the Virgin. 
Incidents in the life of Our Lord^ and His emblems : 

Our Lord with the Cross. 

The Passion, in scenes. 

The Crucifixion. 

Ditto, with SS Mary and John on either side. 

Ditto, ditto, the Father above. 

The Ascension. 

Our Lord sitting on the rainbow. 

The root of Jesse. 

The vernacle. 

The Holy Lamb. 


i6o Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Members of the Holy Host of Heaven : 

[Archangels, angels, and images, passim.] 

Two angels singing. 

Two angels incensing. 

An angel bearing a crown. 

Two angels bearing St John Baptist's head (properly 

An angel with a harp. 
Scenes in the Hfe of St Mary the Virgin and her embkfns : 
St Mary ; on the left side three kings, on the right two 

shepherds, and an angel with ' Gloria in excelsis.' 
St Mary with the Holy Child. 
Ditto, and St Mary Magdalene. 
* Our lady of pity.' 
Wm. Marshall (donor of vestment) kneeling to the 

Suns, Moons, Stars. 
Roses, lilies. (See Group I.) 
Other Saints and their emblems : 

'History of Apostles and Martyrs.' 

St Peter. 

St Catherine. 

St Catherine (the tomb springing oil). 

St John Baptist. 

St Bartholomew. 

History of St John Baptist, ^ Probably in different 

History of St Thomas, / scenes. 

Wheels (St Catherine), 

Keys (St Peter). 

The Majesty, SS Mary the Virgin, Peter, Paul, 

the four evangelists, and a man kneeling to them. 

History of the Processional Vestments. i6i 

Various Scenes in Sacred History : 

Eve eating of the tree. 

The massacre of the innocents. 

The last judgment. 
Uncertain and Miscellaneous Subjects : 

A bishop (probably some saint). 

A king (perhaps King David). 

Kings and prophets. 

Two kings crowned. 
Inscriptions : 

The hye wey ys best. 

'Divers verses.' 

Da gloriam deo. 

Gracia dei sum, etc. 

Vox domini super aquas. 

Cena dni. 

Also the following, which form a connecting- 
link between the second and third groups, being 
requests for prayers for the donors of vestments : 

Orate pro anima Magistri Willelmi Skelton. 

„ J, Willelmi Spenser capellani. 

„ „ Magistri Ricardi Smyth vycar de 


„ „ Roberti Dercy. 

Memoriale Willelmi Marshall olim virgarii hujus 


Group III 
Heraldic : 

Leopards powdered with black trefoils (? leopards 

'White harts crowned with chains on their necks 
full of these letters S.S.' 


1 62 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

Orphreys with diverse arms. 


'All may God amend' (Rudyng motto), together 

with Rudyng arms and badges. 
*A shield paled.' 
Arms of Lord Chadworth. 
Names, Initials , and Dedicatory Inscriptions : 
Ricus de Gravesend. 

T.S., I.e., O.L., P.D. (on different vestments). 
Ex dono Johannis Reed Capellani Cantar' quondam 

cantarie Ricardi Whitwell. 
Southam ex dono Johannis Southam. 
Ex dono M" Willelmi Smyth archidiaconi Lincoln. 

In many vestments, especially among those of 
early date, the embroidery is of a distinctly 
Oriental character, which, if not actually Byzan- 
tine, is founded on Byzantine models. These 
were popularized throughout Europe by the 
Mohammedan weavers and their successors of the 
royal establishment in Sicily. Often vestments 
are found bearing Arabic or other Oriental inscrip- 
tions ; these are sometimes meaningless, like the 
patterns formed with Arabic letters on many 
Eastern shawls and cloths of modern times, but 
occasionally they give important information as to 
the date and origin of the vestment which they 
decorate. The coronation vestments of the German 
Emperors, now at Vienna, are of entirely Eastern 
character, and the cope bears inscriptions in Cufic 
characters, telling us that it was made at Palermo 

History of the Processional Vestments, 163 

in 1 133. Occasionally the Eastern ornaments 
and inscriptions are forged (alas, for mediaeval 
morality!), in order to counterfeit the workman- 
ship of the highly popular Eastern looms. Some- 
times we find clumsy imitations of Arabic words 
treated ignorantly by the forger as ornaments, the 
word being written correctly, though in an obvi- 
ously amateurish manner, from right to left, and a 
replica reversed set opposite to it, in order to 
balance it symmetrically ! 

No country excelled England in embroidered 
work in the middle ages. Matthew Paris's story 
of Pope Innocent IV's admiration of some English 
vestments is well known. His holiness, * seeing 
some desirable orphreys in the copes and infulae of 
certain English ecclesiastics, asked where they had 
been made. " In England," was the answer. 
" Truly is England our garden of delights," said 
he ; *' truly is it a well inexhaustible ; and where 
much is, thence can much be extorted." Where- 
upon the Pope, allured by the lust of the eyes, 
sent his sealed letters to nearly all the abbots of 
the Cistercian order in England (to whose prayers 
he had just been committing himself in the 
chapter-house of the Cistercian order) that they 
should not delay to send those orphreys to him- 
self — getting them for nothing, if possible — to 
decorate his chasubles and choral copes.' Matthew 
Paris concludes his narrative by telling us that the 

164 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

London merchants were gratified enough, but that 
many were highly offended at the open avarice of 
the Head of the Church.* 

This leads us to another point to be noticed 
with regard to mediaeval vestments — their value as 
articles of merchandise. In the * Issues of the 
Exchequer/ 24, 25 Henry III (a.d. i 241-1242), 
there are several entries of expenses involved in 
purchasing vestments. Thus we find 4I. 19s. paid 
to Adam de Basinges * for a gold cope purchased 
by our command and placed in our chapel at the 
feast of the Nativity of our Lord in the 25 th year 
of our reign : also to the same 24I. is. 6d. for a 
cope of red silk given to the Bishop of Hereford 
by our command in the same year and day : also 

* Eisdemque diebus dominus papa videns in aliquorum 
Anglicorum ornamentis ecclesiasticis, utpote in capis chorali- 
bus et infulis aurifrisia concuplscibilia, interrogavit ubinam 
facta puissent. Cui responsum est In Anglia. At ipse, \'^ere 
hortus noster deliciarum est Anglia ; vere puteus inexhaustus 
est ; et ubi multa abundant de multis multa possunt extorqueri. 
Unde idem dominus papa concupiscentia illectus oculorum 
literas suas bullatas sacras misit ad omnes fere Cisterciensis 
ordinis abbates in Anglia commorantes quorum orationibus 
se nuper in capitulo Cisterciensi commendaverat ut ipsi 
aurifrisia ac si pro nihilo ipsa possent adquirere mittere non 
different pracelecta ad planetas et capas suas chorales adom- 
andas. Quod mercennariis Londoniae qui ea venalia habe- 
bant non displicuit, ad placitum vendentibus : unde multi 
manifestum avaritiam Romanae ecclesiae detestabantur. — 
M. Paris, 'Chronica Majora' (Rolls Series), vol. iv, p. 546. 

History of the Processional Vestments. 165 

to the same 17I. i8s. lod. for two diapered and 
one precious cloth of gold, for a tunic and dal- 
matican entirely ornamented with gold fringe pur- 
chased by our command and placed in our chapel 
the same year and day : also to the same 47s. lod. 
for a chesable of silk cloth without gold purchased 
by our command and placed in our chapel : also to 
the same 7s. 2d. for an albe embroidered with 
gold fringe purchased by our command and placed 
in our chapel: also to the same 17I. i mark for 
two embroidered chesables purchased by our com- 
mand and placed in our chapel.'* The same year 
the enormous sum of ^82 was given by the King 
for a mitre. 

It has been calculated that the present value of 
money is fifteen times greater than it was in the 
thirteenth century. Applying this principle, we 
obtain the following results, which give a clearer 
idea of the value of the vestments purchased by 
the King : 

A cope costing 4I. 19s. would be worth, at present rates, 

X74 5s. 

A cope costing 24I. is. 6d. would be worth, at present 

rates, ;f36i 2s. 6d. 

Tunic and dalmatic costing 17I. i8s. lod. would be worth, 
at present rates, ^^269 2S. 6d. 

A chasuble costing 2I. 7s. lod. would be worth, at present 
rates, £t,^ 17s. 6d. 

* 'Issues of the Exchequer' (ed. Dover), p. 16. 

1 66 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

An alb costing 7s. 2d. would be worth, at present rates, 
£S 7s. 6d. 

Two chasubles costing 17I. 13s. 4d. would be worth, at 
present rates, £26^. 

A mitre costing 82I. would be worth, at present rates, 

Even if we allow that these vestments, being 
royal gifts, or royal furniture, were of larger price 
than usual, it still remains evident that a set of 
vestments was an expensive luxury. And when 
we consider the enormous number of vestments 
which were existing in the different cathedral 
establishments, we can hardly wonder at the 
cupidity of Henry VIII being aroused. Mr 
St John Hope has calculated that in Lincoln (of 
which we possess perhaps the fullest set of in- 
ventories) the commissioners of 1536 found 
125 red copes, 7 purple, 20 green, 1^6 blue, 
9 black, 60 white, 2 yellow, 2 various, and perhaps 
4 for choristers — 265 in all ; 16 red chasubles, 
3 purple, 6 green, 11 blue, 5 black, 9 white, 
I yellow and i various — 52 in all ; 2 dalmatics, 
94 tunicles, and 131 albs, not to mention other 
property in embroidered work, such as altar 
frontals, or in precious metal, such as chalices. 
It is, of course, impossible to assign an estimate of 
the value of this vestry, but even if we reckoned 
the copes at ^^^50 of our money — a low estimate in 
the majority of cases — these vestments alone would 

History of the Processional Vestments, 167 

be worth ^13,250 together. But this is pure guess- 
work and of no practical value ; of more import- 
ance is such an entry as the following, from the 
old Durham ' Book of Rites ' (printed by the 
Surtees Society) : 

* Prossession of Hallozve Thursdaie, Wkitsondaie ^ Trinitie 
Sonday, by the Prior and the Monnckes. — The next morninge, 
being Hallow Thursdaie, they had also a generall Prossession, 
with two crosses borne before theme, the one of the crosses, 
the staff and all, of gould, the other of sylver and parcell gilt 
. with all the riche Copes that was in the Church, every 
Monnke had one, and the Prior had a marvellous riche cope 
on, of clothe of ffyne pure gould, the which he was not able 
to goe upright with it, for the weightines thereof, but as men 
did staye it and holde it up of every side when he had it on. 
He went with his crutch in his hand, which was of sylver 
and duble gilt, with a rich myter on his head.' 

In the private account-book of the last prior 
but one of Worcester* is given the following inter- 
esting bill for a mitre : 

*Item to John Cranckes gold smyth of london for al 
maner of stuff belongyng of the new mytur, with the makyng 
of the same as hit apereth by parcelles foloyng : 

In primis for v grete stones - - - xvis viijd. 

Item for j^] & vj stones prece viijd apeece to 

the frontes Ivijs iiijd. 

Item for xxj stones sett in golde, weyng di. 

vnces xiijs iiij^i- ' 

Item for xl medyll stones, prece vjd a stone xxs. 

* Quoted in the Builder, 7 July 1894.. 

1 68 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Item for " & xv smale stones prece iiijd a 

stone, to garncsshc ----- xxvs. 
Item for iij vnccs & a quarter of fyne peerll, 

at iij li. the vnce iij* li xvs. 

Item for xij vnces of medull peerll, at xs the 

vnce vj li. 

Item the selver warke weys, in all ," xiij vnces, 

w^hich is with the fassheon & all - - xxiiij li xvjs. 
Item to the broderar vj wokes (? zvekes) xijd 

a day, besydes mete & dryncke - - xxxvjs. 

Item payd for lynnen cloth to covvech ytt on 

with peril vijd. 

Item for sylke to thred the seid peril & steche 

the peerll j vnce & di - - - - xvd. 

Item for yalovv thred - - - - - jd. 

Item for Rybande of iiijd brcde ij yeards - viijd. 
Item for Reband of ijd brede A yearde - ijd. 

Item for Rovvnde selk about the bordure - jd. ob. 
Item for red selke to sow hytt with all, di. 

quarter the vnce ----- ijd ob. 

Item for past ------ iiijd. 

(Item) for a quarter of sarcenett to lyne hytt xiiijd. 
Item for a case to the mytur of Icthur - - iiijs. 

Summa xlixli. xvs. the costc of the mytur.' 

Before parting with the ancient vestments of 
the Western Church, let us spend a few moments 
on another, and to the antiquary a melancholy, 
subject, namely, the fate which has befallen them. 

The number of actual vestments which survive 
to our own day is comparatively small. Notwith- 
standing the scrupulous care with which they were 

* Sic, should be viiij or ix. 

History of the Processional Vestments, 169 

kept, the action of time and probably of moths 
could not but destroy the perishable material of 
which they were made ; and as so sacred were 
they regarded that when a vestment was worn out 
it was burnt, and the ashes thrown into and washed 
down the drain of the piscina, or font ; so, at least, 
it was ordered by the ninth canon of the Synod 
of Dublin, 11 86.* In France and in England, 
however, far the greatest havoc was wrought in 
the religious and political troubles of the eighteenth 
century in the former case, of the two centuries 
preceding in the latter. 

The destruction of churches and church pro- 
perty in France at the hands of the atheistical 
mobs of the Revolution was incalculable. Monu- 
ments, glass and fabrics were broken and ruined, if 
not utterly destroyed, and the vestments and Pro- 
cessional crosses were torn from the treasuries and 
heaped up in the streets to be burnt in bonfires. 
In England the damage was perhaps even more 
considerable, though it was executed in a quieter 
and more deliberate manner. In the reaction after 
the revival of the Roman faith under Queen Mary, 
orders were sent to the churchwardens of the 
different parishes requesting returns from them as 
to the relics of popery, if any, which remained in 
the churches under their care, and the manner 

" Worn-out vestments were also found useful for the inter- 
ment of ecclesiastics, as we have seen, supra p. loi. 

170 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

in which such superstitious objects had been dis- 
posed of, whenever they had been removed. A 
very perfect series of these returns exists for 
Lincolnshire, and they have been edited by Mr 
Edward Peacock, F.S.A., in a highly-interesting 
volume entitled ' English Church Furniture and 
Decorations,' published in 1866. In each return is 
a note describing what was done with the vestments 
and other pre-Reformation furniture of the church 
to which the return relates. From them we extract 
the following entries, which may serve as speci- 
mens of the varied fate of vestments, not only in 
the county of Lincoln, but throughout the country : 

Jllford. Itm one cope whearof is made a clothe for the 
colon table [a frequent entry]. 

Itm one vestment [chasuble] sold and dcfacid [a frequent 

Ashbie iuxa Sleford. Itm vestmetes copes crosses aulbes 
phanelles crosse clothes banner clothes and all such lyke 
ymplements — stolle out of or churche in quene maries tyme. 

Ashbie iuxa Spillisbie. Itm one vestmt with crose clothes 
— geven to the poore Ao iij° Regine Elizabth [a frequent 

Itfn an alb — whearof wee have made a surples [a frequent 

iAswardbie. Itni two vestmentes were cut in peces yester- 
daie and sold to Thomas waite and george holmes and the' 
haue put them to prophane vse. 

Bomnbie. Itm a vestm* and ye rest as fanells, stooles and 
such like — brent iiij yeare ago pte of the same and the rest 
hath made quishwines of John Michill and James Totter then 

History of the Processional VestmeJits. 171 

So we find at Braceby an alb made a covering 
for the font. At Castlebytham we find ' one cope 
one vestment and one albe ' were ' sold to Thomas 
Inma' for the some of Vs. Vpon sondaie was a 
sevenighte wch he haith defaced and cutt in peces.' 
Elsewhere, a vestment was made into a 'dublett,' 
others into * clorvtes for children,' or ' hangings 
for a bedd.' Some churches had lost their vest- 
ments in the Edwardian Reformation, and conse- 
quently, when they were required again in Queen 
Mary's reign, substitutes had to be borrowed from 
private owners. These were * restored ' to their 
possessors ; in a few cases the churchwardens 
thoughtfully cut them in pieces before doing so. 

There is one other series of vestments which 
deserves a passing notice — the vestments in which 
the newly-baptized were clothed. In the sixth or 
seventh century these consisted of the alha^ the 
sabanum, the chrismale, and the garland. The 
alba was probably similar to the clerical alba ; the 
form of the sabanum {aa^avov) is uncertain, but it 
was possibly not more than its name implies — 
simply a towel. The chrismale was a piece of 
white linen tied on the head, intended to keep the 
chrism in its place during the week in which 
these vestments were worn. The garland was a 
chaplet of flowers with which the baptized were 
crowned after baptism. 

There is a rite in the Armenian Church in 


Ecclesiastical Vestments, 


which the priest twists two threads, one white and 
one red, lifts them up under the cross, and then 
lays them on the person to be baptized. The 
white and red is obviously symbolical of the 
mingled blood and water which flowed from our 
Lord's side, but there are obscure traces in early 
writers which seem to indicate that this observance 
was ot more general acceptance, and that the 
present rite is a corruption of something quite 
different. Durandus, in the ' Rationale Div. 
Off.,' vi, c. 82, speaks of the alba of baptism 
it a red band like a ' corona,' and 
elsewhere we find a combination of 
red and white mentioned in con- 
nection with the robes of the 

These vestments were worn 
throughout the week after baptism, 
and put off on the Sunday follow- 
ing, hence called Dominica in albis 
depositis. They were either re- 
tained after baptism as a memorial 
of the sacrament — and often used 
as shrouds after death — or else pre- 
sented to the church by the baptized. 
In the mediaeval church this 
comparatively elaborate suit was 
reduced to one cloth, the chrysome, or chrism 
cloth, in which the body of a newly-baptized infant 

Fig. 21. 

History of the Processional Vestments. 173 

was swathed. This cloth was kept upon the child 
for a month, and if it died within the month the 
child was buried in it as a shroud. Several monu- 
mental brasses are extant in which children are 
represented in their baptismal robes ; we repro- 
duce an example in Chesham Bois Church, 
Buckinghamshire. In the modern Roman Church 
the white cloth is merely placed on the head ; it is 
now too small to cover the body. 

Fig. 22.— a Cope Chest, York Minster. 
The chrism cloth was taken off if the child 
survived till the end of the month, and returned 
to the church, in whose custody it^ was kept. 
These cloths were used for the reparation of vest- 
ments and altar hangings, and other sacred textile 
fabrics connected with the church. Thus in the 
Treasurer's Rolls for Ripon we read (1470-71) 
the following entries : 

174 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

' Est de cc'^^Ixvj veslibus crismalibus de reman, ultimi 
compoti praedicti. Et de c'^^iij vestibus crismalibus rec. de 
tot pueris baptizatis hoc anno. Summa ccciiij-'^'^ix.* De 

* In sepultura puerorum viij. Et in reparacione vesti- 
mentorum, xiiij. Et liberantur pro manutcrgiis inde fiendis, 
ordinatis pro expensis ecclesiae, ix. Et liberantur pro 
calicibus involvendis et aliis necessariis ejusdem ecclesiae, 
vj. Summa xxxvij. Et reman. ccc"^^lij vestes crismales.'f 

■* There is an error of twenty somewhere in this calcula- 

t ' Memorials of Ripon,' vol. iii, p. 219 (Surtees Society). 



THE proverbial conservatism of the un- 
changing East, which is felt in all 
ecclesiastical as well as in social matters, 
will make our task in the present chapter much 
lighter. The action of evolution, which makes 
the history of the Western vestments so complex, 
is hardly felt in the East. The mediaevalism, 
or, rather, primaevalism, which shuts out in- 
strumental aid from the musical portions of the 
Eastern service acts upon vestments in minimiz- 
ing the profusion of ornamentation which plays 
such an important part in the externals of Western 

One of our earliest authorities on the subject of 
Eastern vesture is St Germanus of Constantinople 
(circa 715 a.d.). In his treatise Mvcttikyj Qewpia 
he enters at considerable length into a discussion 
of Ecclesiastical Vestments and also of Monastic 

176 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Costume, giving details, which are curious, but of 
little or no value, concerning the alleged sym- 
bolic meanings which they bear. 

In the present chapter we have to discuss the 
vestments of the principal Eastern Churches — the 
Orthodox ' Greek ' Church, so called, the Armenian 
Church, and the remote body of Christians on the 
coast of Malabar. The general appearance and 
style of the vestments of these churches is similar ; 
there are, however, minor differences, which will 
appear as we proceed. 

The vestments and personal ornaments of the 
Orthodox Greek Church are as follows : 

I. The (Troiy6.pLov. 

II. The eTTiiiavLKLa. 

III. The e7rtT/3ax>yAioi/. 

IV. The (hpdpLov. 
V. The ^a>vrj. 

VI. The cfyaLvoXtou. 

VII. The eTTtyovaTtcv. 

VIII. The (j!)/xo(f>6piov. 

IX. The fxdvSvas. 

X. The x^H-"-^^^XV- 

XI. The €^(x})(^aiJ.aXav)(7j, 

XII. The Traripeorcra. 

XIII. The lyKoATTtov. 

XIV. The craKKos. 

The Armenian vestments are as follows : 

I. The Vakass. 

II. The Shapich. 

III. The Poor-ourar. 

The Vestments of the Eastern Churches, 177 

IV. The Kodi. 
V. The Pasbans. 
VI. The Shoochar. 
VII. The Sagavard. 

Fig. 23.— Armenian Priest. 

The Malabar vestments are 


The Cuthino. 


The Orro. 


The Zunro. 


The Zando. 


The Phaino. 


The Cap and Shoes 



Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

I. The GToiyapiov was, and is, identical with the 
Roman alba. The word is of uncertain etymo- 
logy, and none of the guesses which have been 
made are at all satisfactory. Like the alba, it was 
originally a garment of secular use ; this we infer 

Fig. 24. — Malabar Priest. 

from the Apologia contra Arianos,^ where we read 
that one charge (among others) which was brought 
against Athanasius was that he had required the 
Egyptians to furnish linen (sroiyapm. Germanus 
says of the vestment, ' being white, the aroiyapiov 
* 'Patrol. Graec./ xxv, 358. 

Fig. 25. — Deacon in 

<XTOLX<^P'-oi' , uipapioi', AND eTTifxauLKia. 

i8o Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

signifies the glory of the Godhead and the bright 
citizenship of priests. The stripes of the aroiyapiov 
on the sleeve signify the bonds of Christ ; the 
stripes which run across signify the blood which 
flowed from Christ's side on the cross.' Setting 
aside the symbolism, we learn that the vestment 
in the time of Germanus was white, ornamented 
with stripes, probably red, upon the sleeves and 
across the body. At present, while the vestment 
is still white on ordinary occasions, on certain days 
coloured aroiyapia are worn, as will be shown in 
the chapter on Ritual Use. The Xiopla, or 
stripes, are now confined to the aroiyapia of bishops. 
In Russia, and elsewhere to some extent, the 
GToiyapia are often made of silk or velvet, though 
linen remains the proper material ; here we see a 
notable correspondence with Western usage. 

The shapich of the Armenians and the cuihino 
of the Malabar Christians correspond to this vest- 
ment and do not differ from it. It goes by other 
names in other parts of the Eastern Church ; these 
are set forth in the appendix. Deacons, members 
of the minor orders, and choristers wear the 
shapich ungirded. 

II. The tTTi/j-aviKia. These correspond to the 
Western maniple, but they differ from it in 
several notable respects. First, one is provided 
for each arm instead of for the left arm only. 
Secondly, they are not worn pendant on the arm, 

Fig. 26. — Priest in cttolxo-Plov , e-mTpaxv^i-ou, (paLVo\LOV, idovrj, AND 

1 82 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

but are drawn round, so that they rather resemble 
cufFs than napkins suspended on the wrist. In 
some early mosaics they are shown not so much as 
cufFs, as large false sleeves. Something similar 
seems to have been worn in the Gallican Church, 
if we may accept the testimony of the MS. already 
referred to on p. 135. 

This vestment — for the two pieces may be said 
technically to form one vestment — was for a long 
time restricted to bishops only, but priests and, 
since 1600, even deacons have had the right to 
wear it. Bishops only, however, are allowed to 
have the kirmaviKia embroidered with the ukwv of 

The kiTiixaviKia are alleged to signify the bands 
with which Christ was bound. 

The Armenian pasban corresponds to the 
ETni^iavLKiov ; so does the zando of the Malabar 
Christians. Both pasban and zando are worn one 
on each wrist ; but whereas the Armenian vestment 
is more like the Western maniple, the zando is a 
false sleeve, fitting the arm tightly and extending 
some way above the elbow. 

III. The imTpayriXiov is in essence identical 
with the stole of the Western Church, but in form 
it differs widely. Instead of being a long narrow 
strip passed behind the neck, it is a short broad 
band with an aperture at one end, through which 
the wearer's head is passed, so that instead of two 

Fig. 27. — Archimandrite in ^aLv6\Lov, i-myovdrLov, iyKdXTnoi', etc. 

1 84 'Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

ends pendant, one at each side, there is but one, 
hanging down in the middle. It is probably the 
richest of all the Eastern vestments ; it is made of 
silk or brocade, and in large churches is orna- 
mented with jewels and precious metals. A 
seam runs conspicuously down the middle, 
dividing the band into two ; this gives the vest- 
ment a more stole-like appearance than it would 
otherwise possess. 

The Armenian foor-ourar and the Malabar 
orro are the equivalents of this vestment, and 
resemble it in appearance. Both names are 
evidently corruptions of the Greek wpapiov. 

IV. The tjpdpiov is the Diaconal substitute for 
the ewiTpayrjXiov. It is identical with the Latin 
stole, and, like that vestment when worn by 
deacons, is carried on the left shoulder. St 
Germanus informs us that it typifies the ministry 
of angels, in that it resembles a pair of wings ; 
this, like many other similar statements, may be 
taken for what it is worth. The sole difference 
between the wpdpiou and the stole lies in its 
ornamentation ; the latter is ornamented in a 
perfectly unrestricted manner, the former bears 
embroidered upon it the rpiadyiovy 

Anoc Anoc Anoc, 

and the Armenian Church as a general rule 
dispenses even with this inscription. 

Fig. 28. — Bishop in (patuoXiou, iTn-yovaTiov, d}/xo<p6pt.ou, etc. 

1 86 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

V. The Z^vt) is simply a girdle which keeps the 
cToiyapiov and kiTiTpayJiXiov in place. To it 
answers the Armenian kodi and the Malabar zunro. 
The Armenians suspend a large white napkin to 
the kodi on the left-hand side, which is used to 
wipe the hands or the vessels when necessary 
during the service, and thus takes the place of the 
old Western maniple. 

VI. The (^iaivoXiov answers in all respects to the 
Western chasuble ; and it is evident that we are 
to see in its appellation the old name paenula. 
The Malabar Christians have a vestment called 
the phaino^ which in appearance corresponds to the 
cope ; but its use assimilates it to the (^aivoKiov^ as 
we should expect from the identity of name. 
The phaino is made of more or less costly 
materials, it is square (not semicircular) in shape 
with rounded corners. A button and loop 
ansv/er the purpose of the Western morse. It 
may be here stated that the embroidery and 
material of the zando usually corresponds with 
that of the phaino with which it is worn. The 
priests of the Armenian Church also wear a cope- 
shaped chasuble. Small bells are sometimes hung 
round the lower edge. The <^aivo\iov of bishops 
was formerly distinguished from that of priests by 
being covered with crosses ; hence called (jiaiuoXiov 

VII. The iTTiyovaTioif is a lozenge-shaped orna- 

The Vestments of the Eastern Churches, 187 

ment, made of brocade, and suspended by one corner 
on the right side of the eirirpay^riXia of bishops. It 
is ornamented with embroidery on its surface, and 
with tassels attached to the three free corners. It 
was originally a handkerchief, and it remained in 
this form for some considerable time ; in fact, it 
remains a handkerchief in the Armenian Church. 
Although properly peculiar to bishops, certain 
other ecclesiastics wear it as a special privilege. 

VIII. The dj/Liocpopiov is equivalent to the 
Western pall (though it is worn by all prelates, 
not by archbishops only), and similar to it in 
shape ; it is, however, rather wider, and is worn 
round the neck in a knot. It is said to symbolize 
the lost sheep — presumably from its being 
carried on the shoulder. 

IX. The indv^vaQ is a vestment similar to the 
cope, worn on certain occasions by Archimandrites 
and the higher orders of the Hierarchy. The 
difference between it and the Western cope 
consists in its being rather fuller, and fastened at 
the lower ends in front as well as at the top. 
Small bells are hung round its lower edge. The 
jLiaif^vag of an archimandrite is not ornamented ; 
that of a prelate is decorated with wavy stripes 
called TTOTafjia Ka\ irw^ara, ' rivers and cups'* — a 

* The assonance cannot be satisfactorily preserved in 
translation. Perhaps 'rivers and lavers * is the nearest 
approximation our language affords. 

1 88 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

fanciful method of expressing the * rivers of grace 
which flow from him.'* 

X, XI. The yai^LoXavyy] is a cap, the k^tiyyafxa- 

\avyj) a hood worn over it. The k^uyafjiaXavyji 
of a Metropolitan is white, signed in front with a 
black cross, that of other prelates black. 

XII. The naTtpecraa corresponds to the pastoral 
staff, but it is shorter and is used as an ordinary 
walking-stick, which it resembles in every 
particular. The handle is usually an ornamental 
modification of the crutched or tau cross. The 
bishops of the Eastern Church wear no ring. 

XIII. The eyKoXiriov is a pectoral cross, worn in 
the East, and similar in all respects to the cross 
worn in the West. 

XIV. The aa/c/coc is the equivalent of the Western 
dalmatic : it is now worn by all metropolitans. 

The Armenian vestments which have not been 
described in the above conspectus are (i) the 
sagavard^ or priest's cap ; (ii) the vakass^ a 
vestment which corresponds to the Western amice, 
and is nowhere else worn in the East. It differs 
from it in the collar standing upright instead of 
being turned down. Attached to the vakass of 
high dignitaries is a breastplate of precious metals 
and stones, bearing the names of the twelve 
apostles. This is as obviously borrowed from the 
Jewish * breastplate of the Ephod,' as the vakass 
* Neale. 

'The Vestments of the Eastern Churches. 189 

itself is borrowed from the Western amice ; but 
the Armenians deny any Western influence in the 
dress, asserting the entire vestment to be of Jewish 
origin ; (iii) the shoochar, which answers in every 
respect to the cope ; and (iv) the sandals, which 
are worn during service, are kept in the church, 
and may not be used on other occasions. 

Vartabeds (/.^., priests especially entrusted with 
the work of preaching and instructing the 
ignorant in the principles of the religion) and 
bishops substitute a mitre for the sagavard, and 
wear a pectoral cross hanging by a gold chain 
round the neck. The copes of bishops are 
ornamented by two strips of brocade, usually 
embroidered with figures of saints; these are 
survivals of the infulae of the mitre, but are 
attached to the shoulder of the cope. Vartabeds 
are distinguished by a staff of which the head 
consists of a cross with two serpents turned round it. 

The Armenian Church permits clergy to remain 
married if the marriage hath taken place before 
ordination. The ordinary dress of unmarried 
priests consists of a black or dark purple cassock 
with a broad belt, over which is worn a gown, 
and (at the recital of the offices) a cope. In 
Persia and Armenia they wear a cap with fur 
border called the kulpas. Married priests wear a 
blue cassock, a black gown, and a blue turban. 

The vestments of the Nestorian Church are 

190 ^ecclesiastical Vestments. 

perhaps the simplest of the forms of dress in 
vogue in the various non-reformed Churches. 
They are six in number, and are respectively called 
the frazona^ peena^ zunndra^ hurrdra^ estla or 
shorshippa^ and msdne. These correspond re- 
spectively to breeches, surplice, or alb, girdle, 
stole, chasuble, and shoes, but they differ in some 
degree from the analogous vestments in use 
elsewhere. They are all made of white linen or 
calico, the only colour employed being in the 
girdle and stole, which (to use the convenient 
heraldic terms) are cheeky in squares white and 
blue, bearing crosses of the same colours counter- 
changed. The chasuble, too, has a Latin cross 
worked on the back. The latter is a clumsy 
vestment, being simply a square cloth, thrown 
over the shoulders and held in position with the 
finger and thumb. The stole does not reach 
below the waist, and is kept in its place under the 
girdle. It is remarkable that the vestments of the 
different orders of clergy differ only in the quality 
of the material, and not in elaboration or form ; 
and that they are, as a general rule, only worn 
during the celebration of the Holy Eucharist or 
the administration of Baptism. At other services 
the priests usually wear their ordinary costume, 
which differs only slightly from that of laymen. 

The following list will show the parallelism 
existing between the vestments of the East and of 

The Vestments of the Ka stern Churches. 1 9 1 

the West ; it is useful as showing that the differ- 
ences between them consist entirely in matters of 
detail, and not in essentials : 

[vakass] = amice. 

(noi\a.piov — alb. 

€-n-LfiavcKia = maniple. 

(jOpdpLOV J 

^<x)V7] = girdle. 

(jiaLVoXtov = chasuble. 

cTTtyovariov may be compared with appendages of 

(x)ixo(f)6piov =pall. 

}j.dvBva^ =cope, approximately. 

Xai^aXaixv^ U mitre 
€^u)xaixa\av)(rj ) 

TraTepecrcra = pastoral staff. 

iyKoX-Tiov = pectoral cross. 

(TOLKKOi = dalmatic 

Thus, the eTriyovariov, fiavcvac;, 'y^a/.iaXavyj] and 

s^txy-^^afxaXav^v have no exact equivalent in the 
West ; while, on the other hand, the amice is only- 
represented in one provincial church, and the 
tunicle, dalmatic, gloves, ring, stockings and 
sandals, have no Eastern vestments to correspond 
with them. This is just what we might expect, 
for these vestments are all, comparatively speaking, 
of mediaeval invention or application, and the 
Eastern Church, as we said in other words at the 
commencement of this chapter, preserves many of 
the primitive rites and usages in a condition much 
less altered by time than does its Western sister. 



ONE of the main differences between a 
church unreformed and a church re- 
formed lies in this : that in the former 
the externals of public worship are magnified in 
importance even to the minutest detail, while in 
the latter the weight attached to such matters is 
diminished in a greater or less degree. 

Considerable variety is apparent in the import- 
ance attached by different reformed churches to 
these matters, and, in consequence, considerable 
variety is apparent in the extent to which they are 
elaborated. Those churches which at the Re- 
formation retained the episcopate, retained with it, 
in a more or less modified form, many of the old 
usages ; while those churches which abolished the 
hierarchical and restored the democratic system of 
church government, for the most part abolished 
the customs of their pre-reformation predecessors. 

"The Vestments of the Reformed Churches. 193 

Perhaps among no bodies of Christians are the 
externals of worship so little heeded as among the 
English dissenting sects ; these, being composed of 
seceders from a reformed church, may be said to 
have undergone a double reformation, which has 
had the effect of expunging the last traces of 
ritual from their services. In the consequent 
neglect of order, the wearing of robes of office 
has become entirely optional, not only with 
the different sects, but even with the individual 
ministers ; and where a gown is worn, as no 
definite shape of gown is prescribed, the choice of 
robe remains optional. Hence, these bodies need 
not concern us further, as the discussion of their 
vestments would be merely an uninteresting and 
morotonous account of the practice of isolated 
modern congregations. 

The four churches whose usage must occupy 
our attention in the present chapter are the 
Lutheran churches of Germany and Scandinavia, 
the Episcopal churches of England and of Spain, 
and the Presbyterian churches, with especial refer- 
ence to the church of Scotland. 

§ I. The Lutheran Churches. 

Of all reformations, the least thoroug'h, as far 
as outward observance was concerned, was the 
reformation in which Martin Luther pl-ayed the 
leading part. In Liibeck is the brass of the 


194 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Lutheran Bishop Tydeman, who died in 1561, 
representing him in full Eucharistic vestments, in 
no wise differing from the vestments of his non- 
reformed predecessors. At the present day the 
predominance of the Evangelical church in Ger- 
many (as distinguished from the Lutheran) has 
abolished vestments, with the exception of the 
Geneva gown and its attendants, among the Pro- 
testants ; but in Sweden and Denmark, where the 
Protestant Episcopal is still the national church, 
the old vestments, with some modifications and 
omissions, are retained. 

The Lutheran minister of the present day in 
Sweden and Denmark is described as wearing an 
ample cassock, or black gown, and a white frilled 
ruff, or collar, both in his outdoor life and at 
morning and evening prayer. At the Communion 
Service he assumes an alb, or, rather, surplice — 
a white, ungirded garment, open down the front — 
over which is placed a chasuble with a large cross 
on the back. 

The Swedish Kyrko-Handbog recognises there 
vestments : the chorkappa^ messhake and messe- 
sjorta — answering to the cope, chasuble, and sur- 
plice, respectively. 

\ II. The Anglican Church. 

The history of vestments and their usage in 
England subsequent to the reformation is not 

The Vestments of the Reformed Churches, 195 

lacking in complexity, and is rendered harder to 
unravel by the heated discussions carried on, and 
the contradictory assertions brought forward, at 
the present day by the various parties within the 
English church. It is no part of our duty here 
to give an account of the different recensions of 
the liturgy published and approved in the years 
after the reformation ; we are here only con- 
cerned with the rubrical directions which they 
contain to regulate the use of vestments permitted 
in the English church. 

The first English Prayer-Book, published in 
1549, contained the following injunction : 

* Upon the day and at the time appointed for the ministra- 
tion of the Holy Communion, the Priest that shall execute 
the holy ministry shall put upon him the vesture appointed 
for that ministration, that is to say, a white alb plain with a 
vestment or cope. And where there be many Priests or 
Deacons there so many shall be ready to help the Priest in 
the ministrations as shall be requisite ; and shall have upon 
them likewise the vestures appointed for their ministry, that 
is to say, albes with tunicles.' 

It is quite clear, even without the documentary 
evidence which is forthcoming, that this was 
merely intended as temporary, as, indeed, was 
the whole 1549 Prayer-Book. In a letter which 
Fagius and Bucer addressed to their Strass- 
burg friends, describing their reception by Arch- 
bishop Cranmer, there is given a short account 

196 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

of the ceremonies then in use. In the course of 
this letter, they say, * We hear that some con- 
cessions have been made both to a respect for 
antiquity and to the infirmity of the present age, 
such, for instance, as the vestments commonly 
used in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.' 

An inspection of the rubric will show that it 
was ingeniously designed to please all parties. 
The word * vestment,' of course, means the 
chasuble, the vestment par excellence^ and therefore 
often spoken of in that apparently general way. 
The ' alb and vestment ' being specified did not 
necessarily exclude all the other vestments which 
were worn between these two. Hence those clergy 
who preferred the old rites and ceremonies might 
read the rubric into permitting, or even enjoining, 
the maintenance of the old vestments,* while those 
who subscribed to the principles of the reforming 
party might set at defiance all old usages by wear- 
ing the cope while celebrating the Communion. 

Another rubric relating to vestments appears in 
the first Prayer-Book. This is the first rubric 
printed after the order for the Communion, and 
runs thus : 

* Upon Wednesdays and Fridays the English Litany shall 
be said or sung in all places . . . and though there be none 
to communicate with the Priest, yet these days (after the 

* With one modification only. The albs are expressly 
ordered to be worn plain. 

The Vestments of the Reformed Churches, 197 

Litany ended) the Priest shall put upon him a plain albc 
or surplice, with a cope, and say all things at the altar 
(appointed to be said at the celebration of the Lord's Supper) 
until after the offertory. . . .' 

Finally, in this Prayer-Book also occurs the 
following : 

'In the saying or singing of Mattins and Evensong, 
baptizing and burying, the minister in parish churches and 
chapels annexed to the same shall use a surplice. And in 
all cathedral churches and colleges the archdeacons, deans, 
provosts, masters, prebendaries, and fellows, being graduates, 
may use in the quire, besides their surplices, such hood as 
appertaineth to their several degrees. And whensoever the 
bishop shall celebrate the Holy Communion in the church, or 
execute any other public ministration, he shall have upon 
him, beside his rochet, a surplice or albe, and a cope or 
vestment, and also his pastoral stafF in his hand, or else borne 
or holden by his chaplain.' 

The revised Prayer-Book of 1552 is much more 
strino-ent in its reformation of vestment-use. It 
condescends to mention vestments but once, in a 
prohibitory rubric, which reduces vestment-use 
in the English Church to an almost Presbyterian 
simplicity. This rubric is as follows : 

* And here it is to be noted that the minister at the time 
of the communion, and at all other times in his ministration, 
shall use neither albe, vestment, nor cope : but being arch- 
bishop or bishop, he shall have and wear a rochet: and being 
a priest or deacon, he shall have and wear a surplice only. 

In the Prayer-Book of 1559 a rubric is to be 
found requiring the restoration of the vestments 

igS Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

and ornaments of the first Prayer-Book, thereby- 
setting aside the order of the second Prayer-Book. 
At the consecration of Archbishop Parker in 1559, 
we are told that at morning prayer the archbishop- 
elect wore his academical robes. After the sermon, 
the archbishop-elect and the four attendant bishops 
proceeded to the vestry, and returned prepared for 
the communion service, the archbishop in a linen 
surplice, the Bishop of Chichester in a silk cope, 
the Bishops of Hereford and Bedford in linen 
surplices, but the Bishop of Exeter (Miles Cover- 
dale) in a woollen cassock only. Two chaplains 
of the archbishop, who assisted the Bishop of 
Chichester at the communion service, also wore 
silk copes. 

After the communion service they again pro- 
ceeded to the vestry and returned, the archbishop 
in ' episcopal alb,' surplice, chimere of black silk, 
and a collar of precious sable-fur round his 
neck ; the Bishops of Chichester and Hereford 
in episcopalia, namely, surplice and chimere. 
Coverdale and the Bishop of Bedford wore cas- 
socks only. 

This passage shows us that the right of private 
judgment was exercised, even at such an important 
ceremony as the consecration of an archbishop, in 
1559 as now. The Puritan principles of Cover- 
dale were given full sway even when acting in co- 
operation with his less austere brethren. 

The Vestments of the Ke formed Churches, 199 

It also introduces us to a new vestment, the 
chimere, which is one of the greatest puzzles to be 
found in the subject of vestments. Since the 
Reformation, it has continued ever since as a dress 
peculiar to bishops, but its origin and the exact 
date of its introduction are uncertain. 

The chimere is a short coat, properly without 
sleeves ; but in England the tailors of the Stuart 
period transferred the sleeves of the rochet to the 
chimere. Hence the modern English bishops wear 
sleeveless rochets and sleeved chimeres — both sole- 
cisms. The English chimere is black, though 
from the reign of Edward VI to that of Elizabeth 
it was scarlet ; but the form current on the Conti- 
nent, a large cape called the mantelletmn, is scarlet, 
and the chimere worn by the Roman prelates in 
England is purple. 

It is not unlikely, from the appearance of the 
vestment, that it is a modification of the cope 
or almuce — possibly a combination of the two 

In 1560 Thos Sampson writes complaining to 
Peter Martyr that ' three of our lately-appointed 
bishops are to officiate at the table of the Lord, 
one as priest, another as deacon, and a third as 
subdeacon, before the image of the crucifix, or at 
least not far from it, with candles, and habited in 
the golden vestments of the papacy.' This seems 
to indicate that at Court (where this was to take 

200 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

place) the old vestments were kept up. From a 
letter of Miles Coverdale's written in 1566, we 
learn that the square cap, bands, and tippet were 
enjoined to be worn out of doors (* Zurich 
Letters,' vol. i, p. 6^, vol. ii, p. 121 ; Parker 

In all the subsequent Prayer-Books, the ' Orna- 
ments Rubric,' as it is called, is the source of our 
information with respect to the vestments re- 
quired to be worn in the English Church. This 
famous rubric runs thus (as given in the Prayer- 
Book of 1662) : 

* And here it is to be noted, that such ornaments of the 
church and of the ministers thereof, at all times of their 
ministration, shall be retained and be in use, as were in this 
Church of England, by the authority of Parliament, in the 
second year of the reign of King Edward the Sixth.' 

The indefiniteness observed in the Edwardian 
rubrics, to which this injunction refers, invests the 
' Ornaments Rubric ' with a certain vagueness ; 
and this is responsible for the long and violent 
strife that has waged around it, and for the chaotic 
condition of modern Anglican order, both in 
vestments and other observances. 

Recent attempts have been made on the part of 
individual clergymen to introduce certain details 
of the ritual of the Western Church into the 
services of the Church of England. All such 
innovations are, however, regarded as illegal, 

The Vest?nents of the Reformed Churches. 201 

and clergymen attempting to introduce them lay 
themselves open to prosecution. The rulings 
in the case known as the Folkestone ritual 
case (Elphinstone v. Purchas) is the standard of 
reference in such matters. Among many other 
details, the use of the following vestments was 
declared absolutely contrary to the Ecclesiastical 
Law of England : The biretta, chasuble, alb, and 
tunicle at the Holy Communion ; the cope at 
Holy Communion except on high feast days in 
cathedrals and collegiate churches. On other 
occasions a decent and comely surplice is to be 
used by every minister saying the public prayers 
or administering the sacrament or other rites of 
the Church.* 

This tendency to elaboration and to revival of 
mediaeval practices is not, however, altogether of 
modern growth. In Wells Cathedral is the effigy 
of Bishop Creighton, who died in 1672, clad in 
cassock, amice, alb, and cope, the latter with a 
jewelled border. On his head is a cap with side- 
flaps, over which is ^imitrapretiosa. More singular 
still, considering that the person commemorated 
was an ardent reformer, is the brass of Bishop 
Goodrick at Ely Cathedral, who died in 1554. 

* For a complete analysis of the ' Ornaments Rubric ' with 
elaborate historical and legal disquisitions, reference should be 
made to the published report of the Folkestone case (Kegan 
Paul, 1878). 

202 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

He is represented in full Eucharistic vestments of 
the pre-Reformation period. Both these apparent 
anomalies are probably to be accounted for by the 
Romanizing tendency of the reigning monarchs 
under whom both these persons lived. 

The vestments of the clergy did not escape the 
lash of the satirists of Queen Elizabeth's reign. 
About 1565, for instance, a tract was published 
entitled ' A pleasant Dialogue between a Soldier of 
Berwick and an English chaplain : wherein are 
largely handled and laid open such reasons as are 
brought for maintenance of Popish Traditions in 
our English Church.' The soldier speaks thus to 
Bernard, the priest : ' But, Bernard, I pray thee, 
tell me of thine honesty what was the cause that 
thou hast been in so many changes of apparel 
this forenoon, now black, now white, now in silk 
and gold, and now at length in this swouping 
black gown, and this sarcenet flaunting tippet.' 
This describes Bernard as first in his ordinary 
cassock or clerical dress ; then in his surplice for 
morning prayer ; then in the cope for communion ; 
and, lastly, in the preaching gown and tippet. 
The passage is interesting, as it brings the practice 
of wearing a black gown at the sermon, once uni- 
versal in the English Church, but now fast dying 
out, back almost to the reformation. 

One more English church vestment remains to 
be noticed — the scarf This is a broad black band 

The Vestments of the Rejormed Churches. 203 

of silk, which is worn like a stole, passed round 
the back of the neck and allowed to depend on 
either side. It is worn by doctors of divinity 
and by the clerical authorities of collegiate and 
cathedral bodies. Its origin is possibly to be found 
in the stole, but it is more probably a modification 
of an article of University costume. 

During the imposition of Episcopacv upon 
Scotland in the Stuart period the dress of the 
clergy was of a form designed by no less a person 
than his Sacred Majesty King James I himself 
At that monarch's own request the Parliament of 
1609 passed an Act authorizing him to do so, 
assigning in its preface the reasons for this step to 
be ' that it had been found by daily experience 
that the greatness of his Majesty's empire, the 
magnificence of his Court, the fame of his wisdom, 
the civility of his subjects, were alluring princes 
and strangers from every part of the world, and 
that it was fitting that bishops and ministers, 
judges and magistrates, should appear before those 
in becoming apparel ; it was therefore referred to 
his Majesty's serene wisdom to devise appropriate 
garments and robes of office for these different 

The result of this was an order ' that ministers 
should wear black clothes and in the pulpit black 
gowns ; that bishops and doctors of divinity 
should wear " black cassikins syde to their knee " 

204 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

[equivalent to the " bishop's apron " of the modern 
English prelate and the short Presbyterian cassock], 
black gowns above, and a black craip [scarf] about 
their necks. The bishops were ordained to have 
their gowns with lumhard sleeves, according to the 
form of England, with tippets and craips about 
their craigs [necks]/ 

In 1 63 1 Charles I directed the surplice to be 
worn. In 1633, when he visited Scotland, the 
bishops and chaplains officiated before him in 
surplices. He induced Parliament to pass an Act 
like that of 1609, giving him the power to regu- 
late clerical costume ; but this was so much 
objected to by the clergy themselves (some of 
whom expressed a fear that his Majesty would 
order them to wear ' hoods and bells '), that in 
1634 they petitioned the King not to interfere 
with the arrangements of his predecessor ; and 
their request seems to have been granted. 

§ III. The Reformed Churches of Spain 
AND Portugal. 

The practices of both these churches are com- 
mendably simple : a white tunic, or surplice, and 
a white stole, are the only vestments or ornaments 
at any time to be worn, except in sermons or at 
funerals, when a black gown may be assumed. 
Deacons wear their stoles in the ancient diaconal 

The Vestments of the Reformed Churches, 205 

fashion, i.e., over the left shoulder and under the 
right arm ; presbyters wear theirs round the neck 
and hanging straight down. 

§ IV. The Presbyterian Church. 
We have already shown that in Apostolic times, 
and the first few years of the post-Apostolic 

Fig. 29.-A Synod Meeting of the Reformed Church of 

period, robes of office were not worn by the 
officiating minister. Vestments do not meet us 
until the moderatorship of the Ecclesiastical 
Assemblies had crystallized into the Episcopate. 
The oldest Christian organization now existing 

2o6 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

in which the diordinal system of government has 
been restored is undoubtedly the Waldensian 
church. Although this church has not been 
proved to be older than the thirteenth century, it 
cannot be asserted that its foundation is not 
anterior to that date ; an impenetrable mist — 
rendered more obscure, it must be admitted, by 
the doubtful authenticity of many of the church 
documents — shrouds its early years. Unfortunately 
it cannot be discovered whether its clergy wore 
any distinctive robes when conducting its services. 
The chroniclers have not thought it worth their 
while to tell us, but it is improbable that anything 
very elaborate was worn, as a church which made 
a change so drastic as the abolition of the Episco- 
pate would be unlikely to maintain the elaborate 
accessories of the non-reformed church. At present 
the simple black gown is worn, as in all other 
branches of the Presbyterian church throughout 
the world. 

The task of compiling details regarding the 
vestments of the Presbyterian church is rendered 
easy by the small account which that church, in 
all its sections, takes of ritual matters ; but the 
same cause also increases its difficulty in another 
direction. Paradoxical as this statement may 
appear, it becomes intelligible when we reflect that 
but few Presbyterian assemblies would consider it 
consistent with their dignity to take any notice of 

The Vestments of the Reformed Churches, 207 

matters of dress, personal or official ; while on the 
other hand few Presbyterian writers have thought 
such matters worthy of their notice. The writer 
has referred to liturgies in the English, French, 
German, Roumanian, and other languages, repre- 
senting the chief reformed Churches of Europe 
holding the Presbyterian system, but has failed to 
find any rubrical direction or reference containing 
any information. The collecting of material is 
thus simplified by the small amount of material 
actually available, but rendered difficult by the 
baldness of the records in which the materials have 
to be sought. 

The vestments worn by clergy of the Presby- 
terian Churches are not so much ecclesiastical as 
professional or academical, like the barrister's 
gown. They are at most four in number : the 
cassock, scarf, bands, and gown, to which the hood 
of the wearer's degree is added. 

The cassock is a somewhat ugly garment of 
black silk, which resembles an ordinary short coat ; 
it rarely reaches as far as the knees. There can be 
no doubt that it is a modification, for conveni- 
ence' sake, of the long cassock worn by clergy of 
the Episcopal Churches, which was the inner gar- 
ment, university and clerical, of the middle ages. 
The scarf is a long strip of black cloth, wound 
sash-wise round the waist and knotted in front. 
The bands are two short pendant tails of white 

2o8 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

lawn, hanging in front, now fastened round the 
neck by an elastic cord. These survive in the 
universities as well as in the Presbyterian Church. 
The name was originally applied to the Eliza- 
bethan ruff, in which must be sought the proto- 
type of the ecclesiastical bands ; and the use of a 
cylindrical box to keep the ruff in has caused the 
survival of the old meaning of the word in * band- 
box.' The stiff starched of propped band passed 
at the commencement of the seventeenth century 
into xhQ falling band (not unlike a modern child's 
lace collar), of which the ecclesiastical * bands ' is 
the diminution. 

The gown is of the pattern known as the 
Geneva gown — a black silk gown with ample 
sleeves and faced with velvet. 

It should be here remarked that there is con- 
siderable laxity in individual usage. The cassock 
and scarf are almost universally discarded, and, in 
fact, they were probably never very generally worn. 
For the Geneva gown is often substituted the 
gown proper to the university degree of the wearer. 

Very few regulations affecting robes have been 
passed by any of the assemblies of the churches in 
the Presbyterian Alliance. The General Assembly 
of the Church of Scotland in 1575 passed an im- 
portant injunction, which, however, refers rather 
to personal than to official attire. As it is a 
curious document, we give it here in full : 

"The Vestments of the Reformed Churches. 209 

'For as muche as a comelie and decent apparrell is 
requisite in all, namelie, ministers, and suche as beare 
functioun in the kirk, first, we thinke all kinde of browdering 
[broidering] unseemlie ; all begaires [coloured stripes] of 
velvet, in gowne, hose, or coat, and all superfluous and 
vaine cutting out, steeking [stitching] with silkes, all kinde 
of costlie sewing on pasments [laces], or sumptuous and large 
steeking with silkes ; all kinde of costlie sewing or variant 
hewes in sarkes ; all kinde of light and variant hewes in 
clothing, as reid, blew, yellow, and suche like, which declare 
the lightnesse of the minde ; all wearing of rings, bracelets, 
buttons of silver, gold, or other mettall ; all kinds of super- 
fluiteis of cloath in making of hose ; all using of plaids in the 
kirk by readers or ministers, namelie, in the time of their 
ministrie and using their office ; all kinde of gownning, 
cutting, doubletting, or breekes of velvet, satine, taffatie or 
suche like ; and costlie giltings of whingers and knives, and 
suche like ; all silk hatts, and hatts of diverse and light colours ; 
but that their whole habite be of grave colour, as blacke, 
russett, sad gray, sad browne ; or searges, worsett, cham- 
lett, grogram, lylis, worset, or suche like; that the good 
Word oi God, by them and their immoderatenesse, be not 

There is one rule, or rather unwritten conven- 
tion, affecting the wearing of vestments in the 
Presbyterian Church, at least, in the British Islands. 
The bands are regarded as an indication that their 
wearer is the minister of a recognised congrega- 
tion ; hence, when an ordained minister of the 
Presbyterian Church who does not hoJd such an 

"^ Calderwood, 'Historic of the Kirk of Scotland ' (Wodrow 
Society), vol. iii, p. 354. 


2IO Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

office happens to be conducting a service, he does 
not wear bands. 

The Geneva gown has not always been worn in 
the Presbyterian Churches abroad. Thus in the 
Church of Holland, till recently, the official costume 
of a minister was a picturesque uniform, consisting 
of the old three-cornered hat, and a coat resem- 
bling the ordinary evening-dress coat, having a 
long pleated strip called the * mantle ' hooked on 
the neck, obviously a survival from an earlier and 
more ample gown of some kind, knee-breeches, 
buckled at the knees, and buckled shoes. This 
costume was worn only when the minister was 
officiating at service. It has nov/, however, been 
universally abandoned for the Geneva gown. 

The gown and bands, with or without the 
cassock and scarf, are now worn only at Divine 
Service ; but in the early part of the seventeenth 
century (in Britain as on the Continent) they were 
worn by ministers sitting in assembly as well, in 
accordance with the decree of the Synod of Fife, 
which in i6it ordained that ministers should 
attend meetings in the exercise of Synodal assembly 
in black gowns and other abul^iements* prescribed 
in the Act of Parliament. 

The elders never wear any insignia of office, and 
never have done so. 

■^ Habiliments. 



WE have now described the form and 
ornamentation of the different vest- 
ments worn by the clergy of the 
principal sections of Christendom ; but we have 
only Incidentally touched upon another and equally 
important matter, namely, when and how these 
vestments were worn, and the liturgical practices 
connected with them. A more extended account 
of these matters will be the subject of the present 

The non -reformed Western and Eastern 
Churches alone need occupy our attention. The 
vestment uses of the various reformed churches 
are practically nil^ and all available details concern- 
ing these Churches have already been given in the 
preceding chapter. 

Vestments were obtained by a church or a 
cathedral in many ways. They were often em- 
broidered for presentation to the church by ladles, 

212 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

who found in the work of embroidery an easy and 
pleasant way of passing the time ; or else by the 
inmates of nunneries as a religious work. Some 
were presented as expiatory offerings by conscience- 
stricken laymen ; others bequeathed as a perpetual 
memorial by incumbents or prelates. Others, 
again, were purchased with money mulcted as 
compensation for sins. 

The first sacred function in which any vestment 
took part was its own benediction. This was 
always spoken by a bishop, and was in form of 
prayers said over all the vestments of a suit 
together, and the individual vestments separately. 
The following may be taken as specimens of these 
dedicatory prayers ; it is unnecessary to occupy 
space in giving all, as complete sets can be found 
in any Pontifical : 

Benedictio 07?iniu7?i vestit?ientorum simul. — Omnlpotens Deus 
qui per Moisen famulum tuum pontificalia et sacerdotalia ac 
levitica vestimenta ad explendum ministerium eorum in con- 
spectu tuo, et ad decorem tui nominis, per nostra humilitatis 
servitutem pontificare ►J* benedicere ►f* consccrare digneris 
►f< ut divinis cultibus et sacris misteriis apta et benedicta 
existant ; hiisque sacris vestibus pontifices, sacerdotes seu 
levite tui induti ab omnibus impulsionibus seu temptacionibus 
malignorum spirituum muniti et defensi esse mereantur, 
tuisque ministeriis apte et condigne servire et inherere, atque 
in hiis placide tibi et devote perseverare tribue. Per Chris- 
tum. Oremus. 

Deus invicte virtutis auctor, et omnium rerum creator ac 
sanctificator, intende propicius ad preces nostras, et hec indu- 

The Ritual Uses of Vestments. 2 1 3 

menta levitice et sacerdotalis glorie ministris tuis sumenda tuo 
ore proprio benedicere i^ sanctificare ►J^ et consecrare dig- 
nerls omnesque eis utentes, tuis misteriis aptos, et tibi in eis 
devote et amicabiliter servientes grates effici concedas. Per 
Christum Dominum. 

Bejiedictio Amicti. — Oremus. Benedic Domine quesume 
omnipotens Deus amictum istum levitici seu sacerdotalis 
officii et concede propicius ut quicumque eum capiti suo im- 
posuerit benedictionem tuam accipiat ; sitque in fide solidus 
et sanctitatis gravedine fundatus. Per Christum. Etc. 

The vestment thus dedicated was sprinkled with 
holy water after each prayer. 

The ritual uses of vestments may be con- 
veniently described in two parts ; discussing in 
the first the persons by whom they were worn, 
and, in the second, the occasions upon which, and 
the manner in w^hich, they were worn. 

The vestments were distributed among the 
different orders of clergy in a manner similar to 
that in which the early vestments of the second 
period were allotted (see p. 28), but on a more 
complex system, as befitted their greater elabora- 
tion. Some hints of this system have already been 
given in the preceding pages ; it will be convenient 
here to amplify this information. 

The seven orders of the Western Church are 
the three minor orders [ostiarius^ lector^ acolytus)^ 
and the four major orders (subdeacons, deacons, 
priests, and bishops ; we may divide the last into 
three subdivisions, ^bishops proper, archbishops, 

214 'Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

and the Pope). All ranks wore the alb^ and all 
the major orders the maniple. . All those above 
the rank of subdeacon wore amice and stole^ and all 
above the rank of deacon the chasuble. Subdeacons 
were distinguished by the tunicle^ deacons by the 
dalmatic ; both vestments were added to the outfit 
of bishops, the latter with a remarkable distinction 
already described (p. 79). Tho. stockings^ sandals^ 
suhcingulum (originally), mitre, gloves, ring, and 
staff WQvt peculiar to bishops and to certain abbots 
to whom these pontificalia had been expressly 
granted by the Pope.^ Archbishops added the 
pall to this lengthy catalogue, and the Pope (who 
dispensed with the pastoral staff) reserved the 
orale, and in later times the suhcingulum, for his 
exclusive use. 

We now turn to the consideration of the occa- 
sions upon which, and the manner in which, these 
vestments were worn. 

The vestments worn at the mass by the cele- 
brant and his assistants were those which we have 
described under the heading of ' Eucharistic Vest- 
ments,' and of these one, the chasuble, was worn 
exclusively at this service and at no other. 

In Advent, and between Septuagesima and 
Easter, the deacons and subdeacons were directed 

* When the abbot of a monastery was also a bishop, the 
prior had also the right to wear pontifcalia when his superior 
was absent. 

'The Ritual Uses of Vestments, 215 

to substitute chasubles for their dalmatics or 
tunicles ; and these chasubles were ordered to be 
worn, not in the usual manner, but folded, and 
passed across the breast like the diaconal stole. 
That is to say, the chasuble, which must have 
been of a flexible'''' material, was folded into a strip 
as narrow as possible, and secured over the shoulder 
and under the girdle of the alb. These were not 
to be worn during the whole service, however ; 
the subdeacon had to remove his folded chasuble 
at the Epistle ; at the Gospel the deacon had to 
cross his over the left arm, and so keep it till after 
the post-communion. 

There is but one representation of a deacon so 
vested known to exist in England. It is one of a 
series of sculptured effigies of ecclesiastics on the 
north-west tower of Wells Cathedral. These 
have been described by Mr St John Hope in 
' Archasologia,' vol. liv. We give here the figure 
to which special reference is at present being made. 
Besides the chasuble, the effigy is vested in cassock, 
amice, alb, and girdle ; and a book, probably 
meant for the Gospels, is represented as carried in 
the hand. 

It should be observed that at the mass of a 

* The difficulty oi folding the chasuble without injuring 
it has led to the substitution of a broad purple stole-like vest- 
ment, worn exactly like the folded chasuble. This is called 
the St ohm. 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

feast falling within the limits of time prescribed, 
the ordinary dalmatic and tunicle were worn in 
the ordinary way. 

Fig. 30. — Deacon in Folded Chasuble, Wells Cathedral. 

This peculiar custom was unknown to the 
Franciscans. The deacons of this order put o.T 

The Ritual Uses of Vestments, 217 

the dalmatic entirely upon fast-days, and did not 
substitute any other vestment for it ; a similar 
practice, with respect to the tunicle, was observed 
by the subdeacons, so that the deacons wore alh 
and stole only, the subdeacons alb and maniple. 
This practice was not observed at the Vigils of 
Saints, or of the Nativity, and on a few other 


When a cleric of sacerdotal rank 'ministered (as 
opposed to celebrated) at the mass, his dress was 
the amice, the alb, the stole, and the cope. The 
same vestments are worn by the priest at the mass 
of the pre-sanctified* on Good Friday. 

Before the vestments are put on for the mass 
the priest must wash his hands, and prepare the 
chalice, placing over it the purificator or napkin 
used for wiping the sacred vessels. Above the 
purificator he places the paten, with an unbroken 
host, and covers it with a small linen cloth, over 
which he puts the burse. This done, he takes 
the vestments one by one ; he first receives^ the 
amice, takes it by its ends and strings, and kisses 
the middle of it where there is a cross. A prelate, 
it should be noticed, always puts on a surplice 
before vesting. The amice being put in its place, 
the alb and girdle are then assumed, then the 
maniple and chasuble. Each vestment is kissed 
* The Sacrament when used on a day when the Eucharist 
service is not gone through in its enurety. 

21 8 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

before being put on, and a prayer said with the 
assumption of each ; these prayers differ little in 
style from those said in the similar ceremony in 
the Eastern Church, and it has therefore been 
thought unnecessary to give them here. 

In an inventory of, the Vestry of Westminster 
Abbey,* the following directions are given in a late 
fifteenth-century hand : 

The Revestpg of the abbot of Westnf att evensong. — fFyrst 
the westerer shall lay the abbots cope lowest opon the awter 
vv'^ in the sayd westre, nex opon hys gray Ames, then hys 
surples, after that hys Rochett and uppermost his Kerchure. 

Hys Myter & crose beyng Redy w^ hys glovys and ponty- 

The Revesting of the sayd abbot att syngyng hy Masse. — 
Fyrst the westerer shall lay lowest the chesebell. a bove that 
the dalmatyke and the dalmatyk w' y^ longest slevys upper- 
most & the other nethermost then hys stole & hys fanane 
and hys gyrdyll, opon that his albe theropon his gray Ames a 
bove that hys Rochett and uppermost hys kerchur w' a vestry 
gyrdyll to tukk up his cole. 

Hys Miter Sc crose beyng Redy w"^ hys glovys and ponty- 
fycalls And a fore all thys you muste se that hys sabatyns & 
syndalls be Redy at hys first cuyng whan he settyth hym 
downe in the travys. 

This direction is important in one respect. It 
shows us the order in which the vestments were 
put on, it is true ; that, however, one would 
naturally infer from the order in which they are 

* Edited by Dr Wickham Legg in ' Archaeologia,' vol. lii., 
p. 195. 

"The Ritual Uses of Vestments, 2 1 9 

seen in the monuments. But it tells us also that 
a canon wore his canonical habit underneath his 
mass habit at high mass, but so arranged that it 
should be, as far as possible, out of sight ; hence 
the direction to have ' a vestry girdle to tuck up 
his cowl.' At Wells, Hereford, and Norwich 
Cathedrals are to be seen figures of canons, the 
almuce or amess appearing at the neck, although 
they are vested in eucharistic habit. 

The duty of the minister, as far as the 
vestments of the celebrant are concerned, consists 
in seeing that the vestments are laid out in their 
proper order on a table in the vestry, or, should 
there be no vestry, on a side-table near the altar 
(never on the altar itself) ; the vestments for the 
assistant should be on the right-hand side of those 
for the celebrant, the vestments for the deacon and 
subdeacon on the left. He should also see that 
each is properly put on, especially that the alb is 
drawn through the girdle so as to overhang it and 
to be raised about a finger's breadth from the 
ground, and that the chasuble is straight. He must 
especially be careful that the assistant does not 
put on his cope before the priest puts on his 
chasuble. During the celebration he has to see 
that the chasuble is not disarranged by genuflexions, 
and to raise the chasuble so as to give complete 
freedom to the priest's arms at the elevation of the 
host. After the celebration the vestments are 

220 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

taken off with similar ceremonies in the reverse 

On Ember days, Rogations, in processions, and 
when the Sunday or Saint's day mass is said in the 
chapter house, on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, 
and Palm Sunday, albs and amices only are to be 
worn by the ministers. 

The dress at the ordinary offices (mattins, lauds, 
etc.) is amice, alb, stole, and cope ; a brass at 
Horsham represents a priest so vested, and has 
the merit" of showing the exact manner in 
which the stole should be crossed. This com- 
bination of vestments was also worn at benedic- 
tions, at absolution after a mass for the dead, 
and, as just remarked, by the assistant at mass 
if a priest, and by the celebrant at the mass 
of the pre-sanctified. 'The cope,' the rubric tells 
us, ' is not strictly a sacerdotal vestment, but it is 
worn by the rulers of the choir and others.' 

The clergy in choir wear black (choral) copes, 
except on principal doubles,* and on the doubles 
falling on Sunday, when silk copes of the colour 
of the day are worn. On the vigil of Easter, and 

^ Feasts were divided into Doubles, Simples, and Sundays. 
Doubles were so-called from the anthems being doubled, i.e., 
said throughout at the beginning and end of the Psalms in the 
breviary office, instead of the first words only being said. 
The principal doubles were Christmas, Epiphany, Easter, 
Ascension, Whitsunday, Assumption, the Local Anniversary, 
and the Dedication of the Church, 

'The Ritual Uses of Vestments, 221 

through and on the octave, they wore surplices 
only, as also on doubles occurring from Easter to 

If a bishop celebrate, and if it be Maunday 
Thursday, or Whitsunday, he has seven deacons, 
seven subdeacons, and three acolytes — on other 
doubles only five. On feasts with Rulers, two at 
least ; on Good Friday only one. The rulers of 
the choir were those whose duty it was to chant 
the office and Kyrie at mass, and to superintend 
the choristers. On doubles these were four in 
number, on simples two. Rulers wore silk copes 
of the colour of the day over a surplice, and had 
silver staves as emblems of office. 

The Roman Pontifical lays down succinct rules 
for the vesting of a bishop for the different duties 
of his position. These are as follows : 

Confirmation. — White cope and stole, amice, rochet, mitra 

Ordinations. — As for high mass : colour according to the 

Consecration of a Bishop. — The consecrator as for high mass : 
colour according to the day ; each of the two assistant- 
bishops in rochet, cope, amice, stole, and mitra simplex. 

Profession of a Nun. — As for high mass. 

Coronation of a Sovereign. — As for high mass : colour 
according to day ; each of the assistant-bishops in rochet, 
amice, white stole and cope, mitra simplex. In England all 
the bishops used to wear full pontificalia. 

Laying the Foundation of a Church. — Rochet, amice, white 
stole and cope, mitra simplex, pastoral staff. 

222 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

Consecration of a Church. — The same till the mass, then 
full pontificalia (white). 

Reconciliation of a Church. — The same. 

Consecration of the Holy Oil on Maun day Thursday. — Full 
(white) pontificalia, mitra pretiosa. 

j4t a Synod held in a Cathedral Church. — Rochet, amice, red 
stole, red cope, mitra pretiosa. 

Procession of Palms. — Alb, amice, purple stole, purple cope, 
mitra simplex. 

Procession of Corpus Christi. — Alb, amice, stole, tunic, dal- 
matic, white cope; a mitra pretiosa borne behind. In England 
and in France red was the colour. 

Rogation Days. — Alb, amice, purple stole, purple cope, 
mitra simplex. 

In occasional services, such as baptism, a 
surplice and stole are worn. At baptisms two 
stoles are used, one of violet, which is worn at the 
first part of the service, and the other of white, 
which is substituted for the first in the course of 
the ofiice. This observance has a symbolical 
meaning ; violet being the colour which typifies 
sin and penitence, and white being associated with 
ideas of purity, the change in the stole is 
emblematic of the regenerating change which the 
rite of baptism is supposed to work. A reversible 
stole, violet on one side and white on the other, 
is sometimes used for this service. In proces- 
sions and benedictions at the altar (/.^., blessings 
of wax, images, etc.) the cope must be worn. 
In other benedictions stole and surplice are suf- 

T^he Ritual Uses of Vestments. 223 

The cope must also be worn at an absolution 
after a mass for the dead ; the colour of the cope 
for such a service is black, the ministers lay aside 
their dalmatics, and when the celebrant assumes 
the cope he must lay aside his maniple. If for 
any reason a cope be not obtainable, these rites 
(benedictions, absolutions, etc.) must be performed 
in alb and crossed stole only, without chasuble or 

Should it be found necessary to celebrate high 
mass without the aid of a deacon or subdeacon, 
the Epistle is ordered to be sung by a lector vested 
in a surplice. 

We must now approach an important branch of 
this complex subject — the varieties in the colour of 
the vestments depending on the character of the 
day, in other words, the liturgical colours of the 

It does not appear that the definite assigning of 
particular colours to particular days is of older 
date than Innocent Ill's time ; but before him, 
and even as far back as the time of the fathers of 
the church, we find that the early Christians had 
symbolical associations with colours, which have 
formed the foundation on which the elaborate 
structure of later times was built. 

It is a matter of common knowledge that there 
are associations of sentiment and colour which are 
practically indissoluble. Black and sorrowful, 

224 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

white (or bright) and joyful, are synonymous 
terms, and similar expressions are universal. 

White^ in the first ten centuries of Christianity, 
typified purity and truth. Saints, angels, and Our 
Lord are for that reason represented clothed in 
white. As we have seen, the earliest vestments 
were probably white ; the newly-baptized wore 
white during the week after baptism, and the dead 
were shrouded in white ; the latter, however, 
probably more for convenience than for any sym- 
bolic reason. 

%ed, the colour of flame, was associated with 
ideas of warm, burning love. Our Lord is some- 
times represented in red when performing works 
of mercy. 

Green^ the colour of plants, was regarded as 
typifying life, and sacred or beatified persons are 
sometimes depicted as clothed in this colour in 
reference to their everlasting life. Lastly, 

Violet^ which is formed by a mixture of red 
and black, was said to symbolize ' the union of 
love and pain in repentance.' It also typifies 
sorrow, without any reference to sin as its cause ; 
thus the Mater Dolorosa is occasionally represented 
in a violet robe.* 

Further than this we cannot go, and perhaps we 
have said too much. It is quite possible that these 

* These explanations of colours are taken from Smith and 
Cheetham's * Dictionary of Christian Antiquities.' 

The Ritual Uses of Vestments. 225 

theories may have been put forward to account for 
phenomena which depended entirely on the taste 
and whim of the painters. It is well known that 
in the early ages of Christianity ideas of colour 
were vague, and yellow and green, dark blue and 
black, light blue and violet, were all regarded as 
being the same colour. Previous to the tenth 
century, it is quite true that coloured vestments 
are to be seen in mosaics and fresco-paintings ; 
but the combinations of colours are such as to 
leave no doubt that they were simply adopted by 
the painter as convenient aids to distinguishing 
the various vestments from the surrounding back- 
ground and from each other. 

Coming now to Innocent III, we find that he 
prescribes four liturgical colours, white, red, black 
and green. These were the principal or primary 
liturgical colours ; but there are others, secondary 
to these, which were modifications in tmt of the 
primaries. Thus, properly, red is the colour of 
martyrs, white the colour of virgins ; but there is 
a secondary colour, saffron, for confessors, and the 
secondaries, rose and lily, are considered inter- 
changeable with red and white. 

Hopelessly at variance are the practices through- 
out the Western Church, and we will not attempt 
to give more than a brief outline of the general 
principles For those who desire fuller informa- 
tion reference is made to a paper by Dr Wickham 


226 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

Legg in the first volume of the Transactions of 
the St Paul's Ecclesiological Society, in which no 
less than sixty-three different ' uses ' are analyzed 
and tabulated, or compared. 

The rules to which we have just referred are 
almost the only regulations respecting which uni- 
form use prevails. For obvious reasons, white 
is appropriated to feasts of St Mary and of the 
other virgin saints ; black is appropriated to the 
office of the dead ; and red to the feasts of 
martyrs. Usually white is used for Christmas 
and Easter, and red for Whitsuntide and Feasts of 
Apostles. As a general rule, however, the same 
sentimental associations are to be seen with colours 
in the middle ages as may possibly be traced in 
earlier times : violet being essentially penitential in 
its character, red being indicative of fire, blood or 
love, white of purity and joy, black of mourning, 
Tind green of life. Hence violet is the usual colour 
for Advent and Lent, red for feasts of martyrs, 
apostles and evangelists, and in some uses for 
Passion-tide and Easter ; white for Christmas, 
feasts of virgins, Easter, and sometimes Michael- 
mas and All Saints ; black for Good Friday and 
offices of the dead ; green from the Octave of 
Epiphany to Candlemas, and from Trinity to 
Advent. The use of the last colour is, however, 
very arbitrary ; it only occurs at one or two seasons 

The Ritual Uses of Vestments. 227 

in the year in each diocese, and these are very 

The following is the Roman sequence of colours 
for the year, and it may be taken as an example 
of all: 

Advent to Christmas Eve : black or violet. 

Christmas Eve, if a Sunday : rose. 

Christmas Day : white. 

St Stephen : red. 

St John the Evangelist : white. 

Holy Innocents : violet ; red if a Sunday. 

Circumcision : white. 

Epiphany : white. 

Candlemas : violet for the procession of candles before 

mass, then white. 
Septuagesima to Maunday Thursday : violet. 
Good Friday : black. 
Easter : white. 
Ascension : white. 
Rogation Days : violet. 
Pentecost : red. 
Trinity Sunday : white. 
Corpus Christ! : white. 
Trinity to Advent : green. 
Feasts of the Virgin Mary : white. 
St John Baptist : white. 
St Michael : white. 
All Saints : white. 
Martyrs : red. 
Apostles : red. 
Evangelists : red. 
Confessors : white. 

228 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Virgins : white. 
Transfiguration : white. 
Holy Cross : red. 
Confirmation : white. 
Dedication of a Church: white. 
Harvest Festivals : white. 
Requiem : black. 

One or two miscellaneous points may be worth 
a passing notice before we bring our account of 
the vestments of the Western Church to a close. 

During Lent it was the practice to cover up the 
images in the church with a curtain called the 
velum quadrigesimale. In the Fabric Rolls of 
York, for instance, we read the following entry 
(Anno 1 518, 1 5 19) : 

' Pro coloribus ad pingendum caminos dc novo factos et 
pro c fauthoms cordarum pro suspensione pannorum quadri- 
gesimalium ante novum crucifixum ivs. 

* Pro pictione unius panni pendentis coram novo crucifixo 
in tempore quadrigesimali, et pro les curtayn ringes et pro les 
laic ac pro suicione alterius panni xiis.' 

A point respecting the ring is worth mention. 
Doctors of Divinity and bishops only may wear a 
ring in the Western Church, and the former must 
take it off when celebrating mass. 

Besides the Episcopal and Diaconal dalmatic^ 
there is a third kind, to which allusion must be 
made: the Imperial dalmatic, which from time 
immemorial has been placed on the sovereigns of 
Europe at their coronation. 

T^he Ritual Uses of Vestments, 229 

The Imperial Dalmatic in the treasury of St 
Peter's at Rome is thus described : 

* It is laid upon a foundation of deep blue silk, having four 
different subjects on the shoulders behind and in front, ex- 
hibiting — although taken from different actions — the glorifica- 
tion of the body of our Lord. The whole has been carefully 
wrought with gold tambour and silk, and the numerous 
figures (as many as fifty-four) surrounding our Redeemer, 
who sits enthroned on a rainbow in the centre, display 
simplicity and gracefulness of design. The field of the 
vestment is powdered with flowers and crosses of gold and 
silver, having the bottom enriched with a running floriated 
pattern. It has also a representation of paradise, wherein 
the flowers, carried by tigers of gold, are of emerald green, 
turquoise blue, and flame colour. Crosses of silver cantonned 
with tears of gold, and of gold cantonned with tears of silver 
alternately, are inserted in the flowing foliage at the edge. 
Other crosses within circles are also placed after the same 
rule, when of gold in medallions of silver, and when of silver 
in the reverse order. 

* This vestment is assigned to the 12th century. It has 
been conjectured that this dalmatic was formerly used by the 
German emperors when they were consecrated and crowned, 
and when they assisted the pope at the ofiice of mass. On 
such occasions the emperor discharged the functions of sub- 
deacon or deacon, and, clothed with a dalmatic, chanted the 
Epistle and Gospel ; in illustration of this custom it may be 
remarked that several of the German Emperors took part in 
the service, even so late as Charles V, who sung the Gospel at 
Boulogne in 1529. The dalmatic was, in fact, in those times, 
as it continues at the present day, both a regal and ecclesiastical 
habit, and it has constantly been the custom of European 
kingdoms for the sovereigns to wear it at their coronation.'* 

* Rev. C. H. Hartshorne in Arch. Journal. 

230 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

But the Ecclesiastical nature of the regal costume 
of the middle ages does not end with the dalmatic. 
Thus, the effigy of Richard I. at Fontevraud wears 
a cope-like mantle, a dalmatic, and a white sub- 
tunic, answering to the distinctive costumes of 
bishop or priest, deacon and sub-deacon respectively. 
When the body of Edward I was exhumed at 
Westminster in 1774, he was found to wear 
among other garments a dalmatic and a stole^ 
crossed on the breast in the priestly manner. The 
body of John, in Worcester, was found in 1797 to 
be habited in costume similar to that represented 
on his effigy, with the addition of a monk's cowl, 
no doubt adopted in order to safeguard his prospects 
of future happiness, as death in the monastic habit 
was regarded as ensuring a passport to heaven. 

The vestments of the Eastern Church are much 
simpler, and the rites connected with them have 
nothing like the complexity associated with those 
of the Western Church. They have but two 
colours, for instance — violet for fast-days (including 
Lent),* and white for the rest of the year — and 
ridicule the elaboration to which liturgical colours 
have been brought in the Western Church. This 
fact might be indicated, if any disproof of the 
existence of a primitive system of liturgical colours 
were needed. 

* Violet or purple (noi\6.pia are worn throughout Lent, 
except on Annunciation Day, Palm Sunday, and Easter Eve. 

T^he Ritual Uses of Vestments. 231 

The following are the rubrical directions and 
prayers used at vesting for the Eucharistic servict 
in the Greek Church : 

Being then come within the altar [after the procession up the 
church^ they [the priest and deacon] make three bows before the 
holy table, and kiss the holy gospel and the holy table : then each^ 
taking his (rroL\dpiov in his hand, makes three bows and s ait h softly 
to himself: 

O God, purify me, a sinner, and have mercy upon me. 

The Deacon comes to the priest, holds his ajoiyo-piov and 
dypdptov in his right hand, and bowing down his head to him, 
saith : 

Bless, sir, the a-roixd.piov and the (LpdpLov. 

The priest. Blessed be our God always, now and for ever, 
even unto ages of ages. 

The deacon then goes apart on one side of the altar ana puts on 
his (noi\a.piov, saying : 

My soul shall rejoice in the Lord, for He hath put on me 
the robe of salvation, and clothed me with the garment of 
gladness : as a bridegroom hath He put a crown on my head 
and decked me like a bride. 

Then, kiising the cjpdptov, he puts it upon his left shoulder. 
Then he puts on his kTTip.<xviKio. : putting on that on his right 
hand, he saith : 

Thy right hand, O Lord, is glorified in strength ; Thy 
right hand, O Lord, hath destroyed the enemies, and in the 
greatness of Thy glory hast Thou put down the adversaries. 

Then, putting the other on his left hand : 

Thy hands have made me and fashioned me. O give me 
understanding that I may learn Thy commandments. 

[He then prepares the sacred vessels.] 

The priest puts on his sacred vestments in the following manner. 
First, taking up his o-rotxa/otoi/ in his left hand, and making three 
bows towards the east, he signs it zvith the sign of the cross, saying: 

232 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

Blessed be our God always, etc. 

And then he puts it on, saying. My soul shall rejoice, etc., as 
the deacon said above. 

Next he takes up the CTrcTpaxyj^i-ov, and, blessing it, he saith : 

Blessed be God who poureth out His grace on His priests, 
like the precious ointment upon the head that ran down unto 
the beard, even unto Aaron's beard, and went down to the 
skirts of his clothing. 

He then takes the ^wvr;, and girding himself therewith, saith : 

Blessed be God who hath girded me with strength, and 
hath put me in the right way, making my feet like harts' 
feet, and hath set me up on high. 

He next puts on his eVt/xai^iKta, saying as zvas said above by 
the deacon. After which he takes up his k-Kiyov6.riov, if he be of 
such dignity as to wear one, and blessing it and kissing it, saith : 

Gird thee with thy sword upon thy thigh, O thou most 
mighty, according to thy worship and renown. Good luck 
have thou with thine honour, ride on because of the word of 
truth, of meekness, and righteousness, and thy right hand 
shall teach thee terrible things : always, now and for ever, 
even unto ages of ages. Amen. 

71;en he takes his <f)€\(^viov, and blesses and kisses it, saying : 

Let thy priests, O Lord, be clothed with righteousness, 
and let thy saints sing with joyfulness : always, now and for 
ever, even unto ages of ages. Amen."^ 

When the vestments are put off after the com- 
munion, the priest says Nunc Dimittis, rpiaayiov, 
and Paler Nosier. 

It does not appear that any complex rules hold 
good in the Greek Church respecting the vestments 
to be worn on certain days in the Church's year. 

* Translation from King's * Rites and Ceremonies of the 
Greek Church in Russia.' 

The Ritual Uses of Vestments. 233 

The following synopsis of the vestment uses in 
the ordination service will show most clearly the 
nature and distribution of Ecclesiastical vestments 
in the Eastern Church. 

Ordination of a Reader : A short (^awokiov put 
on by the bishop, which is presently removed by 
the sub-deacons ; the aroiyapiov is then blessed and 
put on by the bishop. 

Ordination of a Sub-deacon : The candidate 
comes dressed in the aroiy^apiov ; the subdeacons 
hand the wpdpiov to the bishop, who signs it on 
the cross ; the new sub-deacon kisses the cross and 
the bishop's hand, and girds himself with the 


Ordination of a Deacon : The candidate kneels 
before the altar ; the bishop, at the beginning of 
the service, puts the end of the o)/uo(popiov upon 
him. After the service the bishop takes the topapiov 
and puts it on the new deacon's left shoulder, 
saying aSioc, which is repeated thrice by the choir ; 
then the bishop gives him the kmiiaviKia, and a^ioc 
is repeated as before. The fan (for blowing flies 
from the table) is presented after this, with the 
same words. 

Ordination of a Priest : At the commencement 
the candidate kneels at the altar, and the bishop 
puts the (oiuo(i>opLov on his head. At the end the 
(Jpdpiov is taken from him, and the kirirpayjikiov is 
received by the bishop, who kisses it ; the newly- 

234 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

ordained priest kisses the vestment and the bishop's 
hand ; the bishop puts it on the priest, saying 
a&oc, which is repeated as at the ordination of a 
deacon. The t^vr) and <^aivo\iov is then conferred 
in a similar manner. 

Ordination of a Bishop : The new bishop comes 
to the service in all his sacred vestments. At the 
end the widO(j>6piov is put upon the elect, except 
when the consecration takes place in the see of the 
bishop, in which case the da/c/cot and the other 
episcopal garments are given first. The same 
ceremonial is repeated as at the other ordinations. 

The vestments worn at the administration of 
baptism are the (paivoXiov and e-mfxaviKia. 

There are three orders of devotees in the Greek 
monasteries. The probationers wear a black 
cassock or vest called shaesa^ and a hood (Russian 
kamelauch^ yafxaXavyri). The proficients wear, in 
addition, an upper cloak [fxdvlvaq). The perfect 
are distinguished by their hood or vail, which 
perpetually conceals their faces from sight. 



THE following appendix does not profess to furnish 
niore than an outline of the extensive subject 
with which it deals; for further details, as well as 
for illustrations of members of each of the orders 
reference must be made to the great work of Bonann>, cited 
A p ndix III. Bonanni names the different ha us rather 
loosely ; in the main his nomenclature has been followed, but 
brought to a more uniform system. 


The dress of monks usually consists of the r.Hs, turnc o. 

closed gown; the .cpuhr, roughly speakmg, a narrow, 

chasuble like dress, with the front and back porttons rec- 

;: and of uniform width throughout ; one or more open 

gowns it""'"- - '"fP")-' ^"^ *\-^«7- "'1°"^, 
astened at the back and capable of bemg ^^^--^"^^ 

head. 'Discalced- is not always to be taken m us fu lies 
Jnificance, or as signifying more than simply san al ■ 

D fferent vestments are worn by individual orders or ho ses , 

the nature of these will be self-evident from their names. 

,. ALEXiANS.-Black vestis and pallium, both reaching a 
little below the knee : caputium. 

236 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

2. Ambrose, St. — Dark-coloured gown with cappa and 
scapular. Discalced. 

3. Antonius, St {Armenia). — Ample black tunic, girded, 
mantellum, cuculla, and caputium. 

4. Antonius, St {Canons of). — Black gown signed with a 
blue T ; girded white collar, black mantle, also signed with 
T. Others, who are devoted to manual labour, wear a similar 
dress, but tawny in colour. The T is a representation of a 
crutch, the symbol of sustaining and power. 

5. Antonius, St {Egypt). — Black tunic and scapular, with 
round caputium. Discalced. 

6. Antonius, St {Syria). — Long black gown with short 
round caputium, black leather girdle ; over all, long black 

7. Apostoli. — Tawny tunic with girdle of leather, scapular 
with caputium attached. Cappa, and in winter short and 
narrow mantellum. 

8. Aubert, St {Canons regular of; Cambrai). — Violet 
cassock, and cap or biretta : white surplice. 

9. Augustine, St. — Black tunic girded, black cape and 
hood. White may be worn indoors. 

10. Avellanans. — White tunic, scapular, azure pallium, 
square biretta in place of mantellum. 

11. Basil, St {Armenia). — Tunic and caputium white, 
scapular black. 

12. Basil, St {Germany). — Tunic, long scapular, long 
broad cappa, caputium on shoulder, and a biretta on head in 
outline resembling the * Tarn o' Shanter ' cap. 

13. Basil, St {Greece). — Black woollen tunic, over which 
another with sleeves about three palms wide, open in front, 
with woollen fringes or loops of another (but still dark) 
colour, which can be fastened with small buttons. Head 
always covered with a cap, which conceals the ears. Capu- 
tium with vittae or streamers attached, which hang over the 
shoulders, and are said to typify the cross. 

Costumes of the Religious Orders. 237 

14. Basil, St {Italy or Spain). — Till 1443 resembling the 
Greek dress (No. 13). After that date, tunic, leather girdle, 
scapular, cuculla, caputium^ — all black. 

15. Basil, St {Russia). — Like Greece (No. 13), with the 
addition of a small cuculla. 

16. Benedict, St {St Justina of Padua). — Black woollen 
tunic to which a caputium is sewn. Scapular ; cuculla from 
shoulder to feet with very wide sleeves. 

17. Benedict, St {Clugniacs). — Black cappa clausa with 
rude sleeves or hood. 

18. Benedict, St {India). — Black tunic somewhat short, 
white scapular, mantle, and caputium. 

19. Bethlehemites. — Black woollen tunic with leather 
girdle ; cappa, on left side of which a pannula with a repre- 
sentation of the manger at Bethlehem. Discalced. Black 
cap on head. 

20. BiRGiTTA, St. — Gray tunic and cuculla, to which a 
caputium is sewn, gray mantellum, signed with red cross, 
having a white roundle or plate at the centre. 

21. Caelestines. — White, black caputium and scapular. 

22. Camaldulenses {Hermits). — White woollen tunic, 
scapular and round caputium ; cuculla (also white) in 
service. Black shoes. 

23. Camaldulenses (M^///^j). — As Benedictines, but white, 
and the scapular is girded round the loins. Tunic with very 
wide sleeves, caputium, etc. 

24. Capuchins. — Rough black woollen tunic girded with 
coarse rope ; hood and cape. Discalced. 

25. Carmelites. — Tunic, girdle, scapular, caputium, 
brown ; cappa or mantle white. Hat on head black, except 
in Mantua, where it is white. 

26. Carmelites a Monte Sacro. — Cappa shorter than 
that of the other Carmelites, and no cap on head at any 

238 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

27. Carthusians. — Black woollen pallium, over which 
white gown passed over the head, and scapular with side 

28. Cistercians. — Benedict XII decreed brown as the 
Cistercian colour ; but there was an uncertainty as to the 
interpretation of this decree ; some, alleging that gray or 
black were included in the term * brown,' wore those colours. 
To remedy this confusion, Sixtus IV decreed black or white : 
black caputium and scapular girded round loins ; black 
cuculla added out of doors. In choir white. 

29. Cistercians {Fogliantino). — Like the Benedictines in 
shape, white in colour. Formerly discalced everywhere, now 
only in France. Black wooden sandals worn in Italy. 

30. Cistercians [La Trappe). — White cuculla with ample 
sleeves, girded ; caputium. 

31. Chariton, St. — Lion-coloured tunic, with black 
cuculla and caputium. 

32. Choors {Canons regular of; Bordeaux). — White 
woollen vestis, white linen scapular ; linen cotta in choir. 
Almuce, worn over the arms in summer, round the neck in 

33. CoLORiTi {Calabria). — Long tunic, with round capu- 
tium and mantellum from rough black natural wool ; woollen 

34. CoLUMBA, St {Avellana). — White woollen tunic or 
caputium, over which a scapular ; a narrow pallium added 
out of doors. 

35. Cross, St {Canons regular of; Coimbra). — Cassock, 
surplice, and almuce ; the ordinary canonical dress. 

36. Crucifers {Italy). — Blue tunic (formerly ash-coloured, 
or uncertain), scapular, and hood. Silver cross constantly 
borne in the hand. 

37. Crucifers {Belgium). — White tunic, scapular, and 
caputium ; black mozetta, signed in front with a red and 
white cross. 

Costumes of the 'Religious Orders, 239 

38. Crucifers [Lusitania). — Blue tunic, over which gown, 
mozetta and hood. A pallium added out of doors. 

39. Crucifers (Syria). — Black. 

4.0. DiONYSius, St (Canons regular of; Rheims). — Long 
surplice, over which (in winter) a cappa clausa without arm- 
holes. Biretta. Almuce worn over arm. 

41. Dominic, St. — Tunic, scapular, and broad round 
caputium of white wool. Black cappa, shorter than the 
tunic, added out of doors. 

42. FoNTis Ebraldi {Fontevraud). — Black tunic girded, 
scapular, caputium. 

43. Francis, St. — Ash-coloured tunic girded with a cord 
divided by three knots ; round caputium and mozetta. 

44. Francis, St (de observantia). — Woollen tunic girded 
with cord ; cape, hood ; colour formed by mixture of two 
parts of black wool to one of white. Discalced, in wooden 
or leathern sandals. 

45. Franciscans {of St Peter of Alcantara). — Rough and 
patched tunic girded with cord ; cape and hood. Feet 
entirely unprotected. 

46. Francis de Paul, St (Fratres minimi). — Woollen tunic, 
dark tawny colour with round caputium, whose ends hang 
below the loins before and behind, both girded by a rope, the 
free end of which is knotted with five knots (novices knot 
three knots only). Pallium reaching a little below the knees, 
worn in winter both indoors and out. Formerly discalced, 
with sandals of various materials ; afterwards, however, this 
practice was dispensed with. 

47. Genovefa, St (Canons regular of). — White vestis and 
rochet, black biretta, fur almuce over left arm. In winter a 
long black pallium is added to the vestis and rochet, and a 
black caputium or hood. 

48. George in Alga, St (Canons regular of). — Cassock, 
over which a blue gown. 

49. Gilbert, St (Canons regular of). — Black cassock and 

240 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

hood, and surplice lined with lamb's wool. Linen cappa 
added at service. 

50. Gramontans. — Any dress, very rough. The * re- 
formed ' dress is a rough w^hite linen tunic, over which 
another, thinner, of black ; scapular and caputium. 

51. Hermits {Egypt). — Tawny tunic, black pallium. 

52. HippoLYTus, St {Brothers of Mercy of). — Brownish 
tunic, scapular, hood. 

53. HuMiLiATi. — White tunic, scapular, mantle, cape, and 

54. James, St {Canons regular of; Spada). — White woollen 
vestis and rochet. 

55. Jerome, St {Hermits of). — White woollen tunic, 
scapular with round caputium, cappa open in front : all 
black wool. 

56. Jerome, St {Hermits of; foundation of Lupo Olmedo). — 
White tunic girt with black leather girdle round loins; small 
round caputium and tawny cuculla. Black biretta worn at 

57. Jerome, St {Hermits of ; foundation of Peter Gambacortd). 
— Tawny tunic girded with leather girdle, tawny crimped 
cappa, round and narrow caputium, square black biretta. 

58. Jerome, St {Fiesole). — Tawny woollen vestis with 
crimped cappa open in front. Leather girdle. Discalced ; 
wooden sandals, afterwards abandoned. 

59. Jesuati. — White tunic, square caputium, gray cappa 
(after 1367). A white appendage, like a sleeve, worn instead 
of caputium, changed by Urban VIII for a caputium of the 
same colour as the mantle. 

60. JoHANNis Dei, St. — Dark ash -coloured tunic with 
scapular reaching to knees -,* round, pointless caputium. 
Black cap added out of doors. 

* So Bonanni's text ; it reaches to x.h.Q feet in his plate. 

Costumes of the Religious Orders, 241 

61. John, St {Canons regular of; Chartres). — White vestis 
and rochet ; almuce over left shoulder. 

62. John, St [Hermits of, de Poenitentia), — Rough woollen 
cloth, tunic and cappa with hood, feet entirely unprotected, 
heavy wooden cross suspended in front from neck. 

63. John Baptist, St {Canons regular of; England^. — Black 
or brown vestis, scapular, cappa clausa, and mantle, all signed 
with a black cross. 

64. Klosterneuburg {Canons regular of; Austria). — White 
surplice and black cappa, for which latter an almuce is sub- 
stituted on festival days. 

65. LiRiNENSEs {Lerina Island, Tuscany). — Tunic and mantle 
girded with scarf, over this sleeved cappa aperta with small 
caputium : all black. 

6^. Lo, St {Canons regular of; Rouen). — Violet cappa, 
violet mozetta or cape, and hood in winter ; white cassock 
and rochet. 

67. Macharius, St {Egypt). — Violet tunic, black scapular, 
small cuculla ; cap on head covering hair, forehead, temples, 
and ears. 

68. Mark, St {Canons regular of; Mantua). — White woollen 
vestis, rochet, pallium, for which latter a mozetta is substituted 
in choir and a white biretta added. Sheepskin almuce on 
left arm. 

69. Martin, St {Esparnai \_Aspreniacum, Campanid\). — 
Vestis talaris of white, above which a sarrocium or scor- 
ligium, which is a species of rochet, described by Mau- 

* Cit. ap, Bonanni, vol. iv. No. xvii : Quidam enim 
subtile integrum cum manicis integris habent, quidam autem 
deferunt hanc lineam vestem in formam longi et lati scapu- 
laris sine manicis in lateribus apertam quidam circa tibia ad 
latitudinem palmae Carthusiensium more consutam, alii scapu- 
lare latum cum rugis habent aliis est forma parvi scapularis 
ctbrevis cum rugis et plicis e collo pendentis quod Scorligium 


242 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

70. Mary, St {de Mercede Redemptionis Captivorum). — 
White tunic, scapula, short caputium, and cappa. A small 
shield bearing party per fess in chief gules a cross pattee argevt 
in base three pallets (the base charge is the arms of the 
Kingdom of Arragon), is worn in front. 

71. Mary, St {de Mercede Redemptionis Captivorum^ another 
dress). — In this the caputium is prolonged and the feet 

72. Mary, Sr {Servants of). — Coarse tunic, scapular, cappa 
and hood : all black. 

73. Maurice, St {Canons regular of). — Cassock, rochet, 
purple cape or mozetta, biretta. 

74. Monte Luca {Hermits of). — Tunic, short chasuble- 
like scapular, mantle and hood and cap or hat, the latter 
optional ; all tawny colour. Some are discalced, others with 
shoes or sandals. 

75. Monte Senario {Hermits of). — Black tunic, scapular, 
pallium extending below knees, caputium. 

76. Monte Vergine {in Avellina ; ?nonks of). — Tunic, 
scapular, and cucuUa ; out of doors pallium and cap sub- 
stituted for cuculla. All white. 

77. Olivetans. — White vestis with wide sleeves, caputium 
crispatum on shoulder. 

78. Pachomius, St. — White woollen tunic and cuculla, the 
latter signed with a violet cross. 

79. Pamplona {Canons regular of). — Cassock, alb, sleeveless 
rochet, ash-coloured mozetta. 

80. Paul, St {Hermits). — White woollen vestis, rather 
short, with short mantellum over, and short caputium ; 

81. Paul, St {Monks). — White tunic sleeved, caputium. 

dicunt quibusdam ex latere linea hasta aliis area collum pecia 

Costumes of the Religious Orders. 243 

and collar round shoulders. Out of doors, black cap and 
cloak (white in Hungary). 

82. Peter, St {Canons regular of; Monte Corbulo). — At first 
gray cassock and rochet, and almuce or caputium ; after 
1 52 1 black cassock, white-sleeved rochet, and black cloak. 

83. Poland (Canons regular ^).— White tunic and linen 
surplice reaching to about the knees, fur almuce about 
shoulders, dark-coloured skull-cap of wool edged with fur. 

84. Portugal {Canons regular of). — White rochet and 
tunic, tawny almuce, and pallium. 

85. Premonstratensians. — White tunic and scapular, sewn 
up in front, white sleeveless cappa without girdle, white 
biretta, almuce, white shoes. (The white is all natural^ not 

86. Rouen {Canons regular of the Priory of the Two Lovers). 
—White tunic or alb and rochet, almuce. 

87. RuFus, St {Canons regular of; France). — White cassock 
buttoned up in front, white girdle, black biretta. 

88. Sabba, St. — Tawny tunic girded, with black scapular. 

89. Saviour, St {Canons regular of; Laterans). — White 
buttoned cassock, linen rochet. Out of doors black pallium 
and biretta. 

90. Saviour, St {Canons regular of ; Lorraine). — Black tunic 
with little linen rochet hanging down from the neck to the left 
side, five inches broad, like a girdle, over which in choir a cotta, 
and gray almuce carried on the arm in summer ; in winter 
a full sleeveless rochet with cappa reaching to the ankles 
of black linen, whose front edges are decorated with red 
cloth about a foot wide. Caputium, whose front edge sur- 
rounds the face like an almuce, with fur about two inches 

91. Saviour, St {Canons regular of; Syha Lacus Selva). — 
White woollen tunic, rochet and scapular, black cappa. 

92. Sepulchre, the Holy {Canons regular of). — White 

244 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

rochet, black cappa and caputium. At the left side of the 
cappa a Greek cross cantoned by crosslets in red. 

93. Sepulchre, the Holy {Canons regular of; Bohemia^ 
Poland, Russia). — Black vestis and rochet, over which a man- 
telletum — a waistcoat or rochet-like vestment, sleeveless, 
but rather long, open in front, and reaching to a little above 
the knees — on the left side of which a double-transomed 

94. Sylvester, St. — Tunic, caputium, scapular, cuculla of 
blue. Biretta worn on sacred occasions. 

95. Trinitatis, SS {Redemptionis Captivorum). — White 
tunic, scapular, and cappa, with red and blue cross flory 
on the scapular and left side of the cappa. 

96. Trinitatis, SS {Redemptionis Captivorum; Spain). — 
Cappa brown, otherwise as above described. By others in 
Spain a tawny cappa is worn, and the feet are discalced. 
Round black caputium added. 

97. Trinitatis, SS {Redemptionis Captivorum ; France). — 
All white, the cross plain ; feet discalced ; caputium also 

98. UsETz {Canons regular of). — White buttoned tunic and 
surplice, extinguisher-shaped, like the ancient chasuble. 

99. Valle de Choux {Burgundy, ietween Dijon and 
Autun, Canons regular of). — White, black scapular, girded 
with black girdle. 

100. Valle Ronceaux {Canons regular of). — Black, with 
white scapular, very small, and resembling archiepiscopal pall. 
Black cappa added in service. 

1 01. Valle di Scholari {Canons regular of). — White 
woollen tunic and scapular ; black cappa lined with lamb's 
wool, biretta. 

102. Valley of Jehoshaphat {Canons regular of). — Full 
red cuculla and caputium. 

103. Vallis Viridis (;?-f^r Brussels; Canons regular of). — 
Black tunic and cassock, white rochet, black caputium. 

Costumes of the Religious Orders, 245 

104. Vallumbrosans. — Identical with the Sylvestrines, but 
grayish-black instead of blue. 

105. Victor, St, Without the Walls (Canons regular 
of; Paris). — White tunic and wide-sleeved surplice, almuce, 

106. ViNDESHEiM (Canons regular of). — White tunic and 
rochet, biretta, fur almuce added on shoulders in winter. 

107. William, St (Hermits of). — Tunic, over which 
another sleeveless, girded. Scapular, feet entirely unpro- 
tected. At first white, but black after union with the 


The dress o^ nuns, as a general rule, consists of a vestis 
(gown or tunic), girt at the waist, and a scapular. To these 
various orders add pallia, mantella^ etc., as will appear from 
the following list. Asa general rule, a white^r^^Tz/Wor breast- 
cloth is fastened over the head and round the throat and breast ; 
over this two loose vela or cloths are placed on the head, the 
inner white, the outer black. The feet, even of *discalced ' 
nuns, are protected at least by wooden, bark, or leathern 
sandals ; very rarely are the feet entirely unprotected. 

1. AcEMETAE (or VigHants). — Uncertain; according to 
some authorities, green vestis, signed with a red cross, above 
which a mantellum or cape. Black velum on head. 

2. Agnes, St (Dordrecht), — White vestis and scapular, black 
velum on head, ruff round neck. 

3. Ambrose, St. — White, black velum on head. 

4. Angelica, St (Milan). — White vestis and scapular, cross 
on breast, ring on finger, with cross in place of a jewel. 

5. Antonius, St (Syria). — No definite rule, any dress suit- 
able to monastic life. 

6. AvGVSTi'tiE^^T (Solitaries of 1256). — Black; Gregory IX 
gave licence to wear white, with black scapular and velum on 


Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

7. Augustine, St {ancient habit). — Black tunic, white linen 
rochet, on head a cloth, ornamented with semee of red 
crosses, reaching down the back like a cloak or cope. 

8. Augustine, St (discalced ; Spain). — Similar to the corre- 
sponding monks, but with the usual vela on the head. 

9. Augustine, St (discalced ; Lusitania). — White vestis (to 
which a black vestis is added on feast days) girded with black 
leather girdle, white scapular, black mantellum ; on the head 
a rough white linen cloth hanging before the face to the eyes, 
but behind to the waist. On this white cloth another, black, 
about five palms in breadth. 

10. Augustine, St {Penitents of). — Black vestis and cappa, 
reaching to knees ; scapular white ; face covered with a 
black veil. 

11. Augustine, St {Venice). — White ; black veil on face. 

12. Basil, St {Eastern). — Natural (undyed) black dress; 
black mafors (narrow scapular-like pallium) ; gloves or 
sleeves covering the arms and hands as far as the fingers ; 
black velum covering the whole head. 

13. Basil, St {Western). — As in the East till 1560. After 
that date, black vestis, scapular and velum reaching from head 
to knees ; black gremial or breast-cloth. A cassock with 
ample sleeves added for church services. 

14. Begga, St {Antwerp). — Black vestis, black pallium 
from head downwards, a cap (biretta), resembling in outline 
an inverted saucer, on head white velum round head and 
across breast. 

15. Benedict, St. — As monks, but with velum in place of 

16. Benedict, St {de Monte Cahario). — White tunic and 
scapular, with black velum on head. Discalced. 

17. BiRGiTTA, St. — White camisia, gray tunic, cuculla with 
sleeves reaching to tip of middle finger, gray mantellum. On 
the head a * garland ' or 'wreath* concealing the forehead 
and cheeks, and secured at the back of the head by a pin 

Costumes of the 'Religious Orders. 247 

On this is placed a black velum fastened by three pins, one on 
the forehead and one over each ear. Above this is a corona of 
white cloth consisting of a Greek cross passing over the head 
from forehead to back and from ear to ear, the ends joined 
by a circle that passes round the temples. At each of the 
intersections of the cross arms with each other and with the 
circle is fastened a small piece {gutta) of red cloth — the total 
of five doubtless typical of the Five Wounds. 

18. Caesarius, St. — White vestis, girded ; black velum on 

19. Calatiavans. — White; white scapular signed with red 
cross flory, usual white and black vela on head. 

20. Camaldulenses. — White ; scapular confined with white 
girdle ; usual vela on head. 

21. Canonesses regular {Belgium, Lorraine, ^ic). — White 
tunic girt at waist, mantle over ; black velum on head ; a 
rochet is worn in some houses. 

22. Canonesses regular [Rouen). — Originally white ; now 
black tunic, black mantellum lined and edged with white 
mouse-fur ; black and white vela disposed as usual on head. 

23. Canonesses (Mons). — Black vestis with white sleeves ; 
black velum on head reaching down back half-way ; pallium 
or mantle on shoulder hanging to ground, black lined with 
white. In church service the dress consists of white linen 
surplice or cassock reaching to feet, braided with a cord sewn 
upon it arranged in ornamental knots and scrolls ; peaked 
head-dress, from the point of which hangs a long pendant 
streamer. Pallium or mantle of black silk, lined with mouse- 
fur, white with black spots. 

24. Capuchins. — Rough woollen vestis, scapular, man- 
tellum, white gremial cloth, black and white vela on head. 

25. Carmelites (ancient). — Tawny tunic, short white 
pallium or mantle, white velum encircling head. 

26. Carmelites (modern). — Tawny tunic and scapular, 
white pallium reaching to feet, usual vela on head. 

248 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

27. Carmelites (^France). — Brown habit, white mantellum 
lined with fur, white gremial cloth covering head and breast, 
black velum above this. 

28. Carmelites (discaiced). — Like ordinary Carmelites, 
but with somewhat long cappa of coarse cloth ; two black 
vela on head ; feet shod with woollen cloth and bark 

29. Carthusians. — White tunic and scapular; cloth on 
neck and breast, usual velamina on head. 

30. Cassian. — White tunic and linen rochet, with black 
velum on head. 

31. Cistercians. — White ; gray (sometimes black) scapu- 
lar, girded ; in choir a white cuculla added. 

32. Clugniacs. — Black tunic, girded ; ample scapular, also 
black ; usual vela on head. 

33. Columbanus, St. — White tunic, cuculla, gremial 
cloth, and velum on head. 

34. Cross, St {Penitents of). — White tunic, over which 
another, black, girded with leather girdle. White gremial 
cloth and velum. 

35. Dominic, St. — White vestis, girded; scapular; black 
and white vela on head. In choir or at the Sacrament a 
cappa is added. 

36. Dominic, St {Penitents of). — White tunic and scapular ; 
white gremial cloth and velum, over which a flowing black 
pallium is placed which hangs down to the feet. 

37. Eligius, St. — Black tunic, white mantle, white gremial 
cloth on head and breast, over which black velum. 

38. FoNTEVRAUD. — Black tunic, white gremial and velum. 

39. FoNTEVRAUD {reformed). — Black pallium added to 
previous dress. 

40. Francis of Assisi, St. — Rough tunic girt with a rope, 
scapular and mantellum ; white gremial cloth. Discaiced ; 
feet in wooden sandals. 

41. Fructuosus, St. — Cuculla, pallium, and tunic, all 

Costumes of the Religious Orders. 249 

gray ; girdle securing tunic black. Discalced (sandals worn 
in summer, shoes in winter). 

42. Genovefa, St [Canonesses ./).— White tunic and sur- 
plice, black fur ' almutia,' ornamented with white spots, worn 
at se'rvice over left arm (something like a long maniple). 
White gremial cloth, and black velum over it on head. 

43. Gilbert, St.— Black tunic, mantle, and hood, the last 
lined with lamb's wool. 

44. Hilary, St.— Gray tunic, not long, over which a short 
tawny pallium ; black velum on head, with white band round 
forehead ; shoes with pointed toes turned upward. 

45. Hospitalers of St John of Jerusalem. — Tawny 
tunic with white cross sewn on breast. White velum on head. 

46. Hospitalers of St John of Jerusalem {France).— 
Black vestis signed with a white cross fourchee ; pallium with 
similar cross on left shoulder ; white and black vela on head. 
Fastened to the pallium a rosary divided into eight parts, 
symbolical of the instruments of the Passion. 

47. Hospitalers (C^;/.;/m./,- P^nV).— White vestis, linen 
rochet, pallium from shoulders to feet, usual vela on head. 

48. Hospitalers of the Holy Ghost (5^;r.;.j).— Black 
vestis, with double-transomed cross fourchee in white on the 
left side of breast. Usual vela on head. 

49. HuMiLiATi (M/^;^).-White tunic girded ; loose white 
scapular ; white velum. 

50. Infant Jesus, Virgins of.— Woollen vestis of dark 
tawny colour. On certain days black velum on head reach- 
ing nearly to feet. 

51. Isidore, St. — Uncertain ; probably gray tunic and 

cappa with hood. Discalced. 

52. James, St, de Spatha.— Black vestis with red cross 
flory fichee on the right on the breast. White cappa reach- 
ing to feet. Usual vela on head. 

53. Jerome, St. — White tunic, gray scapular, black 
pallium, black velum on head. 

250 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

54. Jesuatae. — White tunic and brown scapular ; cappa 
of the same colour added at service. Usual vela on head. 

55. Lateran Canonesses Regular. — White tunic and 
rochet ; white gremial cloth over head and breast, over 
which black velum. A wide-sleeved surplice added for 

56. Laurence, St {Venice). — Black vestis with white velum 
on head, not altogether covering the hair. A long flowing 
cassock added for a service-robe, and a long black velum 
placed over the white velum. 

57. Macharius, St. — Tawny vestis with black cappa, or a 
sheepskin over it. 

58. Malta, Knights of. — Black tunic and scapular, black 
pallium, very long and supported over the arms to keep it 
from the ground ; white Maltese cross on left shoulder of 
pallium. Black and white silk chain hanging from neck 
supporting wooden images of the instruments of the Passion. 

59. Maria, St, in Capitolio {Canonesses of). — Silk vestis, 
above which a white rochet. Head covered with long black 
velum reaching to ground. At first a crimped, rufF-like collar 
round the neck ; this was afterwards abandoned. 

60. Maria Fuliensis, St. — Rough white vestis ; white 
gremial cloth on head and breast, loosely covered with black 
velum. Discalced. 

61. Mary the Virgin, St, Annunciation of. — Gray tunic, 
white chlamys or cloak, red cross-shaped scapular, usual head 

62. Mary the Virgin, St, Annunciation of {another order). 
— White vestis, black girdle, white scapular, blue gown, white 
gremial on head and breast, black velum. 

63. Mary the Virgin, St, Assumption of. — Blue, secured 
with white girdle, white scapular, white gremial cloth, white 
velum (very long) on head. In choir a pallium of mixed 
silk and blue wool is added. 

64. Mary the Virgin, St {Canonesses regular of). — Black 

Costumes of the Religious Orders. 251 

tunic, over which a long black cappa is girded in choir ; 
usual gremial cloth and vela. 

65. Mary the Virgin, St, Daughters of {Cremona). — 
Black. Resembling the habit of the priests of the Society of 
Jesus, but u^ith black velum in place of biretta. An extra 
black velum and an extra black mantle is added out of doors. 

66. Maria, Sta {de Mercede Redemptionis Captivorum). — 
White vestis and scapular ; usual vela on head. In centre of 
breast a shield bearing party per fess in chief gules a cross 
pattee argent, in base three pallets. 

6j. Mary the Virgin, St, Servants of. — Same as corre- 
sponding monks, with velum instead of caputium. In 
Germany certain of this order wear a white velum with a 
blue star on the forehead. 

68. Mary the Virgin, St, Seven Sorrows of. — Black 
woollen vestis and girdle, head and breast with white linen 
covering, long black head-covering put on out of doors. 

69. Mary the Virgin, St, Purification of. — Simple black 
vestis, white collar and cuffs, black velum on head — much 
like ordinary mourning dress. 

70. Mary the Virgin, St, Visitation of. — Black vestis, 
pectoral cross of silver with figure and monogram of Christ. 
Usual vela on head. 

71. Mary of the Rosary, St. — Black ; image of the Con- 
ception, surrounded by a rosary embellished with figures of 
the instruments of the Passion, on breast ; white gremial 
cloth and white velum on head. 

72. Olivetans. — White cuculla and tunic ; usual vela on 

73. Pachomius, St. — Black tunic and gray hood ; a row of 
small white Greek crosses along every edge. 

74. Philippines of Rome. — Black woollen tunic, white 
sleeveless surplice with black cross in centre. Usual vela on 

75. Premonstratensians. — White vestis and pallium, white 

252 Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

scapular girded. On the forehead a cross signed on the white 

76. Peter of Alcantaria, St (Solitaries of), — Rough vestis 
girded with a rope ; scapular, mantle, and velum. No cover- 
ing on head. 

yj. Sacrament, Adoration of the Most Holy. — Black 
vestis, black velamen over head and shoulders, golden figure 
of the Host on breast. 

78. Mary the Virgin, St, Presentation of. — Black, 
white scapular, usual vela on head signed with cross in the 
centre of the forehead. 

79. Sepulchre, Canonesses of the Holy. — Black tunic, 
over which a white sleeveless surplice reaching to knees. 
Usual vela on head. Mantellum, on the left shoulder of 
which is a double transomed cross in red. To the left side 
are two ropes sewn, knotted together by five knots to typify 
the Five Wounds, 

80. Stephen, St. — White woollen vestis and scapular with 
red cross fourchee on breast. Usual vela on head. In choir 
a white cuculla is added with full sleeves of red silk. 

81. Sylvester, St. — Similar to monks, but with usual vela 
on head. 

82. Trinitatis, SS {Redemptionis Captivorum), — White 
vestis and scapular, black pallium. On pallium and scapular 
a red and blue Greek cross fourchee. Usual vela. 

83. Trinity, Most Holy. — White tunic and scapular, 
tawny cappa signed with Greek cross fourchee in red and 
blue. Similar cross on scapular. Black sandals. 

84. Urbanists. — Blackish vestis and scapular, tawny man- 
tellum at service, white gremial cloth, white and black vela 
on head. 

85. Ursula, St. — Black vestis girded with cord, white 
gremial cloth, long black velum on head. 

86. Ursula, St {Rome). — Woollen vestis of mingled black 
and violet, with black tunic fastened by black leather 

Costumes of the Religious Orders, 253 

girdle. Usual vela on head, the black one reaching to the 

87. Ursula, St {Parma). — Black vestis, very long dark 
violet pallium, the hem girt up in the girdle, and that part 
over the head concealing the eyes, 

88. Vallumbrosanae. — As monks, but with black cuculla 
usual vela on head. 

89. MiNisTRANTES Infirmis [Belgium). — Black dress and 
scapular ; white velum over head and shoulders. 

90. MiNisTRANTEs Infirmis {Libumi). — Blue dress with 
long and wide sleeves, white velaraen over head and breast, 
another white velamen loose on head girded with rope round 

91. Sacrament, Poor Virgins of the Holy. — Woollen 
tawny tunic girt with rope. White velamen on head. 

Mediaeval University Costume. 

The details here given respecting mediaeval university 
costume are abridged from a long and exhaustive paper by 
Prof. E. C. Clark in vol. 50 of the Archaeological Journal. 

There is no doubt that the university dress of the middle 
ages is an adaptation of monastic costume. The original 
schools from which the universities were developed were of 
a clerical character, and their members wore clerical dress. 
The dress of the mediaeval universities was international, 
unlike the costume worn to-day ; hence the following 
account, while primarily concerned with the English uni- 
versities, will serve as a description of Continental university 
dress as well. 

The system of degrees was developed in France by the 
end of the thirteenth century. There were four grades : 
first, the ordinary scholar or undergraduate ; then the 
determinant ; thirdly the licentiate ; and fourthly the master, 
professor or doctor. The undergraduate resided, attended 
lectures, and argued on questions in the schools ; the 

254 Ecclesiastical Vestments. 

determinant 'determined' or decided on questions upon which 
he had previously merely argued ; the licentiate received 
the chancellor's * licence ' to incept {i.e.y take the steps 
necessary for obtaining the master's degrees), to lecture, and 
to dispute in school exercises. The mastership w^as the 
highest grade, and it included the regent, who was engaged 
in teaching, and the non-regent, who had ceased to teach. 
From the second grade probably sprung the baccalaureat ; the 
bachelor was at first a kind of supernumerary teacher, whose 
lectures were probably recognised only within his own 

The robes are thus described : 

1. Toga or roba talaris, the simplest and most general 
form of university dress, probably originally derived from 
the Benedictine habit. It was full and flowing, open in 
front, with wide sleeves through which the arms passed their 
whole length. Subsequent modifications curtailed the sleeves 
for undergraduates (retaining the fuller form for mourning), 
and (in England) introduced distinctive marks for the various 
colleges. The modern Bachelor and Master of Arts gown is 
derived from this dress combined with other garments. In 
certain colleges in Oxford it was directed to be sewn up 
from the wearer's middle to the ground. In Clare Hall, 
Cambridge, fellows were permitted to line it with fur. Gona 
and Epitogium, which we meet with in certain mediaeval 
statutes, are probably synonyms of this. 

2. Hood. The hood {^caputium) was originally the head- 
covering in bad weather ; it was afterwards dropped on the 
shoulders, and then assumed the form of a small cape. A 
large tippet is sometimes seen beneath this cape in representa- 
tions of academical costume. The Undergraduate's or Scholar^s 
hood was black, not lined, and to it a longliripipe or streamer 
was sewn at the back ; the Graduate's was furred or lined, 
with a short liripipe. The various degrees were indicated 
by differences of lining ; bachelors wore badger's fur or lamb's 

Mediaeval University Costume. 255 

wool ; licentiates and regents wore minever or some more 
expensive fur ; non-regents wore silk. When the under- 
graduates abandoned hoods (before sixteenth century ; exact 
date uncertain) they became a distinctive mark of the attain- 
ment of a degree. 

The liripipe was also called tipetum or cornetum. The 
latter may be the origin of the French cornette, a silk band 
formerly worn by French doctors of law, and a possible origin 
for the modern English scarf. The word liripipe is also used 
to denote pendant false sleeves, and also the tails of long- 
pointed shoes. This, however, lies rather in the region of 
everyday costume. In 1507, at Oxford, we find typet or 
cornetum used to denote an alternative for the toga talaris 
allowed to Bachelors of Civil Law. This is clearly not the 
tail of a hood, but its exact significance is uncertain. 

3. Mantellum. The origin and meaning of this word are 
alike uncertain. The use o^ ' mantelli ov liripipia^ commonly 
called typets,' was prohibited to fellows and scholars of 
Magdalen College, Oxford, by a statute dated 1479, except 
injirmitatis causa. From this we may infer that the mantellus 
(also called mantella or mantellut?i) was something akin to 
the liripipe. In another notice (1239) they are coupled with 
cappae : certain riotous clerks had to march in a penitential 
procession * sine cappis et mantellis.^ Prof. Clark infers from 
these passages and from other sources that the academical 
mantellum 'is not a hood, but is worn either instead of, or in 
addition to, the hood, with the cope, or else instead of the 
cope or long tabard.' 

4. Cassock, This was at one time worn by all members of 
universities under their gowns. Doctors of divinity, 
doctors of laws, cardinals, and canons wore scarlet. 
Certain days at present are called * Scarlet Days ' in the 
English universities, on which doctors in all faculties wear 
scarlet. This may be a survival of the ancient scarlet cassock. 

5. Surplice. ^ A dress of ministration, used in college 

256 Ecclesiastical Vest?nents. 

chapels by non-ministrants, more as a matter of college 
discipline than as academical costume.' 

6. Almuce. Distinctive of masters and doctors, distinct 
from the hood. Another possible origin of the English hood. 

7. Cope. There were two kinds of cope in use at the 
English universities — the cappa manicata or sleeved cope ; 
and an uncomfortable contrivance called the cappa clausa, 
which was sewn all the way up, passed over the head when 
put on, and was not provided with sleeves or other openings 
for the arms save a short longitudinal slit in front The 
Archbishop of Canterbury prescribed this as a decent garb 
for Archdeacons, Deans and Prebendaries in 1222. Regents 
in arts, laws, and theology were permitted to lecture in a 
cappa clausa ox pallium only. The cappa manicata was probably 
worn generally, as being a sober and dignified dress ; it very 
rarely occurs in contemporary representations. 

8. The tabard or colcbium was a sleeveless gown closed 
in front ; but ultimately it was slit up, the sleeves of the 
gown proper were transferred to it, and the use of the latter 
discontinued. All not yet bachelors were required by the 
statutes of Trinity Hall, Cambridge (1352), to wear long 
tabards, while Clare Hall, the adjoining foundation, required 
its Master (Head), masters, and Bachelor Fellows to wear 
this and other robes, in 1359. Kings' Hall (13S0) required 
every scholar to wear a rcba talaris, and ever}' bachelor a 
robe with tabard suited to his degree. 

9. University Head-dress. A skull-cap was early allowed to 
ecclesiastics to protect the tonsured head in cold weather, 
and, except the ordinary hood, this is the only head-dress 
recognised by the early university statutes. This pileus, 

however, soon assumed a pointed shape, thus , ^ n and in 

this form was recognised as part of the insignia of the 
doctorate ; doctors only are represented wearing it upon 
monuments. The central point developed afterwards into 
the modern tassel. Bachelors wore no official head-dress. 

Index of Sy?ionymous Terms. 257 



Alba (Lat.), alb. 
A.vaSoXdbLov (Gk.), amice. 
Anabolagium (Lat.), amice. 
XvafSoXalov (Gk.), amice. 
Anagolaium (Lat.), amice. 
Aurifrigium (Lat.), orphrey. 
Baltheus (Lat.), girdle. 
Bitarshil (Copt.), stole. 
Caligae (Lat.), stockings. 
Cambo (Lat.), pastoral staff. 
Cambutta (Celto-Lat.), head 

of pastoral staff. 
Campagi (Lat.), stockings. 
Cappa (Lat.), cope. 
Capuita (Lat.), pastoral staff. 
Cassacca (Lat.), cassock. 
')(^afiaX.av\Lov (Gk.) = X^H-^' 

Chirothecae (Lat.), gloves. 
Chrysoclave (O.-Eng., from 

Lat.), orphrey. 
Cingulum (Lat.), girdle. 
Clappe (O.-Eng.), pastoral 

Cleykstaff (O.-Eng.), pastoral 

Cleystaff (O.-Eng.), pastoral 

Cruche (O.-Eng.), pastoral 


Ephod (Lat., from Heb.), 

k-LjiavLKa (Gk.), maniples. 
€77Lfj.avLKLa (Gk.), maniples. 
i-LTpax'i]Xiov (Gk.), stole. 
Faino (Syr.), chasuble. 
Fanon [a), (Lat.), maniple. 
Fanon [b), (Lat.), orale. 
Ferula (Lat.), pastoral staff. 
Fourevre (Fr.), mozetta. 
Humerale (Lat.), amice. 
Hure (O.-Eng.), ecclesiastical 

Jabat (Copt.), alb. 
Kerchure (O.-Eng.), amice. 
Koutino (Syr.), alb. 
Manicae (Lat.), gloves. 
fxavLKia (Gk.), maniples. 
Mantile (Lat.), maniple. 
Mappula (Lat.), maniple. 
ujpdpLov (Gk.), stole. 
Orarium (Lat.), stole. 
Oururo (Syr.), stole. 
Pedum (Lat.), pastoral staff. 
TrepLTpdxrjXi (Gk,), stole. 
7repLrpaxi)XL0v (Gk.), stole. 
(^aiXovLOv (Gk.), chasuble. 
(^aivoXi (Gk.), chasuble. 
(^aivoXiov (Gk.), chasuble. 
(^aKeuiXiov (Gk.), stole. 



Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

Phrygium (Lat), orphrey. 
Pluviale (Lat.), cope. 
Poderis (Lat.), alb. 
Poruche (Rus.), maniple. 
Regnum (Lat.), tiara. 
Roba (Lat.), university gown. 
Roc (A.-S.), tunicle or dal- 
Sabatyns "1 (O.-Eng.), stock- 
Sabbatoncsj ings. 
Sambuca (Lat.), pastoral staff. 

(TTOlXapLOVJ ^ ' 

Subtile (Lat.), tunicle. 
Succinctorium (Lat.), sub- 

Sudarium (Lat.), maniple. 

Superhumerale (Lat.), alb. 

Tibialia (Lat.), stockings. 

Tilsan (Copt.), chasuble. 

Toga = university gown. 

Toumat (Copt.), alb. 

Triregnum (Lat.), tiara. 

Tunica alba (Lat.), alb. 

Tunica talaris (Lat.), cassock ; 
also university gown. 

Tunicella (Lat.), tunicle. 

vTTOjiavLKLa (Gk.), maniples. 

Varkass = vakass. 

Vestment(0.-Eng.), chasuble. 

Virga pastoralis (Lat.), pas- 
toral staff. 

Zendo (Syr.), maniple. 

Zona (Lat.), girdle. 



*^* As this list is intended as a guide to the student rather 
than as a criterion of the labour involved in writing this volume, 
it has been reduced by the omission of classical and other texts 
from which casual quotations have been made, and of many 
books which the author consulted without obtaining any 
information of value. 
Badger (G. P.), The Nestorians and their Ritual. 2 vols. 

London, 1852. 
Bloxam (M. H.), Companion to the Principles of Gothic 

Ecclesiastical Architecture. London, 1882. 
Bock (F.), Geschichte der liturgischen Gewander des Mittel- 

alters. 3 vols. Bonn, 1859. 

List of Principal Authorities, 259 

Bona y.)' Rerum liturgicarum libri duo. 3 vols. Turin, 

Bonanni, Catalogo degli ordini religiosi della chiesa militante. 

5 vols. Rome, 1722. 
Calderwood (D.), Historie of the Kirk of Scotland. 8 vols. 

Wodrow Society, Edinburgh, 1842-49. 
Carter (J.), Specimens of English Ecclesiastical Costume. 

London, 18 17. 
Cripps (H. W.), A Practical Treatise on the Law relating to 

the Church and Clergy. 6th edition. London, 1886. 
Dolby (Anastasia), Church Vestments : their Origin, Use, 

and Ornament. London, 1868. 
Fabric Rolls of York Minster. Surtees Society, Durham, 
1859. (Also several other volumes of the publications 
of this Society.) 
Fortescue (E. F. K.), The Armenian Church, founded by St 

Gregory the Illuminator. London, 1872. 
Haines (H.), A Manual of Monumental Brasses. Oxford, 


Harrison (B.), An historical Enquiry Into the true Interpre- 
tation of the Rubrics in the Book of Common Prayer. 
London, 1845. 

Hart (R.), Ecclesiastical Records of England, Ireland, and 
Scotland from the Fifth Century till the Reformation. 
Cambridge, 1846. 

Hartshorne (C. H.), English Mediaeval Embroidery. Archaeo- 
logical Journal, vol. I, pp. 3i8-335» vol. ii, pp. 285-301. 

Hefele (C. J.), Beitrage zur Kirchengeschlchte, Archaologie 

und Liturglk. 2 vols. Tubingen, 1864. 
Howard (G. B.), The Christians of St Thomas and their 

Liturgies. Oxford, 1864. 
tssaverdens (J.), Armenia and the Armenians. 2 vols. 

Venice, 1874. 
Josephus, Works of, ed. RIchter. Leipsig, 1826. 

26o 'Ecclesiastical Vestments, 

King (J. G.), The Rites and Ceremonies of the Greek 

Church in Russia. London, 1772. 
Labbe (P.), and G. Cossart, Sacrosancta concilia ad regiam 

editionem exacta. 18 vols. Paris, 1671-72. 
Lanigan (J.), An Ecclesiastical History of Ireland. 4 vols. 

Dublin, 1822. 
Marriott (W. B.), Vestiarium Christianum. London, 1868. 
Martene (E.) and U. Durand, Thesaurus novus anecdo- 

torum. 5 vols. Paris, 17 17. 
Maskell, Monumenta ritualia ecclesiae anglicanae. Oxford, 

Migne, Patrologia (almost all quotations from the early 

church writers are taken from this edition). Paris, 

1 849-64. 
Moleon (le Sieur de), Voyages liturgiques de France. Paris, 

Neale (J. M.), A History of the Holy Eastern Church. 

4 vols. London, 1850. 
Papal Letters (Calendar of Entries in the Papal Registers 

relating to Great Britain and Ireland, ed. W. H. Bliss). 

London, 1893. 
Paris (M.), Chronica majora. Ed. Luard. 7 vols. Rolls 

Series. London, 1872-1883. 
Pugin (A. W.), Glossary of Ecclesiastical Ornament and 

Costume. London, 1868. 
Quick (J.), Synodicon in Gallia Reformata ; or the Acts, 

Decisions, Decrees, and Canons of those Famous 

National Councils of the Reformed Churches in France. 

2 vols. London, 1692. 
Reichel (O. J.), English Liturgical Vestments in the Thir- 
teenth Century. London, 1895. 
Renaudot (E.), Liturgiarum orientalium collectio. Paris, 


Rock (D.), Church of our Fathers. 3 vols. London, 1849- 

List of Principal Authorities. 2 6 1 

Rock (D.), Textile Fabrics : a Descriptive Catalogue of the 
Collection of Church Vestments, [etc. in South Kensing- 
ton Museum]. London, 1870. 
Row (J.)> The History of the Kirk of Scotland from the 
Year 1538 to August, 1637. Wodrow Society, Edin- 
burgh, 1892. 
Rubenius (A.), De re vestiaria veterum, praecipue de lato 
clavo. In the Thesaurus Antiquitatum Romanorum of J. 
G. Graevius, vol. vi, col. 913. Leyden, 1697. 
Saussay (A. de), Panoplia clericalis libri xv. Paris, 1649. 
Shaw (H.), Dresses and Decorations of the Middle Ages. 

2 vols. London, 1853. 
Smith (W.) and S. Cheetham, A Dictionary of Christian 
Antiquities. London, 1875. 
• Stothard (C. A.), Monumental Effigies of Great Britain. 
2 vols. London, 18 17. 
Webb, Sketches of Continental Ecclesiology. London, 1848. 
Wey (F.), Rome. London, 1872. 

Willemin (N. X.), Monumens fran9ais inedits. 2 vols. 
Paris, 1839. 
Reference has also been made to the Church Times, the 
Builder, and the principal archaeological periodicals and 
publications of archaeological societies. 


Absolution, vestments worn at, 

Acolytes, cassock of, 139 

insignia of, 213, 214 

Aethelwold, benedictional of, 115 
Aix-la-Chapelle, chasuble at, 86 
Alb. See also Alba, 64 

noaterial and colour of, 65 

ornamentation of, 66, 151 

plain, when worn, 67 

symbolism of, 68, 69 

dimensions of, 69 

modifications of, 140, 141 

contrary to English Church 

law, 201 

by whom worn, 214 

Alba. See also Alb, Dalmatica, 

Roba Talaris 
by whom and when worn, 

28, 30 

origin of, 29, 31 

description of, 30 

canons respecting, 30 

ornamentation of, 32, 59 

baptismal, 36, 37 

of newly baptized, 171 

sigillata, bullata, dd 

in Gallican church, 135 

Eastern equivalent of, 178 

Alcuin (pseudo-) quoted, 34, 64, 

69, 77.89, 96, 103, III, 149 
Almuce, description of, 142 
distinctions of ecclesiastical 

rank in, 142 
derivation of name, 142 

Almuce, evolution of, 143-146 

worn under Eucharistic vest- 
ments, 219 

in the universities, 256 

Amalarius of Metz quoted, 52, 68, 
T], 89, 92-95, 103, 122 

Ambrose cited, 38 

Amess. See Almuce 

Amice, 64 

origin of, 71 

how, by whom, and when 

worn, 71, 214 

description of, 71 

symbolism of, 72 

ornamentation of, 151 

vakass borrowed from, 188 

Amys. See Almuce 

Anastasius Bibliothecarius 
quoted, 34 

Anglican church, vestments in, 
194 et seqq. 

Apparels, 153 

Aquinas, St Thomas, cited, 132 

Archdeacons, supposed, in St 
David's Cathedral, 80 

Aregius, Bishop, receives dal- 
matica, 54 

Armenian church, baptismal rite 
in, 171 

vestments of, 176 etseqq, 

Augustine cited, 38 

Aurelian, his grant of oraria to 
the Romans, 38 

Autun, MS. at, on vestments of 
the Gallican church, 29, 135 



Autun, Honorius of. See Honorius 
Bishops of, their privileges, 

Auxanius, circumstances of his 

receipt of the pallium, 51 

Bamberg, Bishops of, their privi- 
leges, 102 
Bands, origin and development of, 

when worn in Presbyterian 

church, 209 
Baptismal vestments of adminis- 
trator, 36, 122, 222 ; of baptized, 

alba, 36 

stole, 222 

Bells and pomegranates, 6 
Benedict III, life of, quoted, 66 
Benediction of vestments, 212 
Biretta, birettum, 150, 201 
Bishops, insignia of, 27, 28, 213 

stole, how worn by, 74 

dalmatic of, 79 

wearing archiepiscopal in- 
signia, 102 

subcingulum once worn by, 

vestments worn by, on dif- 
ferent occasions, 221. See also 
under the names of different 
Bloxam quoted, 80 
Bonanni quoted, Appendix i 
Boniface VIII adds crown to 

tiara, 121 
Bonnet of Levitical priest, 5 
Brachialia, 122 

Braga, Councils of. See Council 
Breastplate of the ephod, 9 
Breeches, 4 
Bucer quoted, 195 
Bullinger quoted, 104 
Buskins. See Stockings 
Byrrhus, 33 

Caligae. See Stockings 
Calliculae, 59 
Canons. See Council 
Canon's cope, 148, 220 
Cap, Levitical, 5 
ecclesiastical, 149 

Cap, Malabar, 177 

university, 256 

Cappa, monastic, 235 

serica, 148 

manicata, 256 

clausa, 256 

See also Cope 

Caputium, 235, 254 

Cardinals wear scarlet cassock, 139 

Carthage, Council of. 6"^^ Council 

Cashel, crozier of, 127 

Cassianus quoted, 44 

Cassikin, 204 

Cassock, description of, 138 

distinction of ecclesiastical 

rank in, 139 

modern, 139 

in Presbyterian church, 207 

in universities, 255 

Casula in Gallican church, 29, 


secular, 43, 44 

See also Chasuble 

Celebrant, vestments of, 214 
Celestine, Pope, his letter on 

vestment ritual, 26, 46, 57 
Cencio de Sabellis quoted, 107, 

Chain, golden, 103 
Xa/iaXai;x'7. 1 76, 1 88, 234 
Chambre, Will, de, quoted, 14 1 
Charles I, his ordinance respect- 
ing vestments, 204 
Charles the Great, 60 
Chasuble {see also Planeta), 64 

materials of, 81 

eucharistic and processional, 


description and varieties of, 


dimensions of, 86 

ornamentation of, 86, 152 

symbolism of, 89 

forbidden in English church, 


folded, when worn, 215 

Childebert consents to bestowal of 

pallium, 51 
Chimere, 148, 199 
Chirothecae. See Gloves 
Choir, vestments of, 148, 220 
Chorkappa, 194 



Chrismale, 171 

Chrysome, 172 

Cicero quoted, 43 

Cidaris, 112 

Clark, Professor E. C, quoted, 
253, ^/ seqq. 

Clavi, 31, 32, 42, 49, 58, 80 

Clement, liturg>' of, 15, 19 

Coat of fine linen, 4 

Collar, Roman, 148 

Colobium, 32-36 

in the universities, 256 

Colours, liturgical, unknown in 
Early church, 58 

in Western church, 223 

in Eastern church, 230 

Commodus, t,t, 

Consecration of Archbishop Par- 
ker, 198 

Constantius, 17 

Cope, origin of, 146 

description and material of, 


hood of, 147 

morse of, 147 

canon's, 148, 220 

ornamentation of, 153 

for most part forbidden in 

English church, 201 

worn by minister, 217 

university, 256 

Corinthians, First Epistle to, 
quoted, 22 

Cornette, Cornetum, 255 

Coronation robes, 162. See Dal- 
matic, imperial 

Cotta, 141 

Council, second of Braga, 40 

fourth of Braga, 40, 41 

fourth of Carthage, 30 

of Mayence, 41 

first of Narbonne, 30 

fourth of Toledo, 27, 31, 35, 

39» 53. 55. 64, 114, 122 

See also Synod 

Coverdale, vestments worn by, 198 

cited, 200 

Cross-staff, 125, 130 

Crozier. See Pastoral staff 

Cuthino, 177, 180 

Cyprian, St, of Carthage, 33 

C3'ril, Bishop of Jerusalem, 17 

Dalmatic {see also Dalmatica), 64 

derived from alba, 78 

episcopal and diaconal, 79, 


ornamentation of, 80, 152 

symbolism of, 79, 81 

by whom worn, 214 

imperial, 229 

Dalmatica, a vestment in Rome, 

29. 45. 53 

secular, 32 

Sylvester's decree concern- 
ing. 34 

Isidore on, 35 

David wears ephod, 8 

Deacon, insignia of, 28, 34, 52, 


when to wear alba, 30 

Sylvester's decree respecting 

vestments of, 34, 52 

stole, how worn by, 74 

dalmatic of, 79 

folded chasuble, when worn 

by, 215 
Degrees, Mediaeval university, 253 
how distinguished by dress, 

De Saussay quoted, 58 
Destruction of vestments, 168 
Development of vestments, chaps. 

i-iii passim 
Doctors of Divinity wear scarlet 

cassocks, 139 

wear gray almuces, 142 

Doeg, 8 

Dol, Bishops of, their privileges, 

Dolby, Mrs, quoted, 69, 144, 149 
Dominica in albis depositis, 172 
Dorsal orphrey, 88 
Doubles, 220 
Drawers, 4 

Dublin, Synod of. See Synod 
Duchesne quoted, 50 
Dunstan, St, figure of, 97, 116, 118 
Durandus quoted, io5, 134, 172 
Durham Rites quoted, 167 

Eastern Churches, vestments of, 

chap. V 
'EyKoXTTtoi/, 176, 188, 191 
Elagabalus, 33 



Embroidery. See Apparels, 


Oriental, 162 

England, excellence of embroidery 

in, 163 
destruction of vestments in, 


vestments of church of, 194 

Ephod, description of, 6, 7 

girdle of, 7 

by whom worn, 8 

worshipped, 8, 9 

proper name, 9 

breastplate of, 9 

Latin name for amice, 257 

'ETTiyovariov, I08, 176, 186, 191 
'ETTiiJiaviKia, 136, 176, 180, 191, 


Epiphanius quoted, 113 

Epitogium, 254 

'ETTtrpax'/X'oi', 50, 176, 1S2, 191, 

Estla, 190 

Eucharistic vestments, chap, iii 

chasuble, 82 

'E^wXa^aXavxih 1 76, 1 88, 191 
Exodus, book of, quoted, 4-8 

■ Fabius, 33 
Fagius quoted, 195 
Ferula, 58 

Fife, Synod of. See Synod 
Final period of vestments, chap, iii 
Flower of chasuble, 89 
Folkestone ritual case, 201 
Fountains Abbey mitre, 119 

Gallican church, vestments of, 29, 


Gammadia, 58 

Garland, baptismal, 171 

Genesis of vestments, chap, i 

Geneva gown, 208 

Georgi quoted, 106 

Germanus quoted, 18, 175, 178, 

Germany, vestments in, 193 
Gideon, 8 
Girdle, Levitical, 4 

of ephod, 7 

ecclesiastical, 64, 70. See 

also ^wj'j; 

Girdle, contrasted with subcingu- 
lum, 107, 109 

Gloves, 64 

when recognised as vest- 
ments, 121 

symbolism of, 122 

ornamentation of, 152 

by whom worn, 214 

Gold plate, apostolic, 112 

Golden chain (loop of pall), 103 

Gona, 254 

Gown, black preaching, 202, 204 

monastic, 235 

university. See Toga 

See also Geneva gown 

Gregory the Great quoted, 28, 45, 
51, 52, 104 

picture of, 54 

sacramentary of, 55 

Gypciere, loS 

Headdress, ecclesiastical, 149 

university, 256 

High Priest, vestments of, 6 et seq. 
Holland, church of, vestments in, 

22, 210 
Homer cited, 20 
Honorius of Autun quoted, 64, 69, 

75, 103, 109, in, 121, 122,123, 


Hood of chasuble, 82 

of cope, 147, 153 

monastic, 235 

university, 254 

Hope, Mr St John, quoted, 144, 

Hosea quoted, 8 
Humeral orphrey, 88 
Hurrara, 190 

Infulae, 118, 129 

Innocent HI quoted, 58, 64, 69, 

75, 89, 96, 103, 107, 131, 134, 

Innocent IV covets English 

orphreys, 163 
Institution of bishops, 55 
Inventory of Boniface VIII, 75 

Canterbury, 65 

Dover, 65 

Lincoln, 81, 129, 158, 166 

London, St Mary Hill, 141 



Inventory of Peterborough, 65, 


Westminster, 65, 70, 218 

Winchester, 65, 129 

Irish crozier, 126, et seqq. 

Isidore of Seville, 27, 35, 54, 55, 

56, 58, 112, 115, 122, 126 
Issues of the Exchequer quoted, 

Ivo of Chartres quoted, 52, 64, 

69, 89, 96, 105, III, 122 

James I prescribes vestments for 

Scotland, 203 
Jerome, 15-18, 114 
Jewel, Bishop, cited, 104 
Jewish vestments, 2-14, 18, 136 
Joannes Diaconus, his portrait of 

Gregory I, 54 
John, Bishop of Ravenna, 53 
Josephus quoted, /\- 10 pas si j?i 
Judges, Book of, 8, 9 

Kamelauch, 234 
Ki^apig, 112 
Kodi, 177, 186 
KoXojSiov. See Colobium 
Kulpas, 189 

Lampridius quoted, 33, 43, 44 

Aa/i7rp6e, meaning of, 19 

Landulphus, pontifical of, 40 

Laoghaire, druids of King, their 
prophecy, 115, 128 

Lector, 213 

Leo III, 58 

Letters on vestments, 59 

Levitical vestments. See Jewish 

Limerick mitre, 120 

Lincolnshire, destruction of vest- 
ments in, 170 

Lineae = tails of pall, 104 

Linen breeches, 4 

tunic, 4 

Liripipe, 254 

Liturgical colours. See Colours 

Liturgy of Clement. 6ee Clement 

Lituus, 56 

Aiopia, 180 

Lucca, Bishops of, their privileges, 

Luther, reformation of, 193 

Macarius, 17 
Mafors, 246 
Maimonides quoted, 4 
Malabar vestments, 177 ei seqq, 
'^lavlbaq, 176, 187, 191, 234 
Manicae, 121, 135 
Maniple, 64, 180. See also 

description of, 75 

symbolism of, 77 

ornamentation of, 151 

by whom worn, 214 

Mantelletum, 199 

Mantellum, 245, 255 

Mantle, 210 

Manualia, 29, 135 

Mappula, a Roman vestment, 29, 

^^5 • • r 
origm of, 52 

spread of, 53, 54 

Marriott quoted, 15, 16, 19, 25, 

29, 50. 62, 94, 115, 122 

Martene, 29 

Mayence, Council of. See Council 

Menard, 115 

Mesnaemphthes, 5 

Messesjorta, 194 

Messhake, 194 

Micah, 8 

Minerva Library, pontifical in, 37 

Minister, dress and duties of, at 

mass, 217, 219, 220 

Mitre, Levitical, 10 

ecclesiastical, 64 

origin of, 1 12 

early, 1 14 

development of, 1 16 

infulae of, ii8 

ornamentation of, 118 

various kinds of, 119 

by whom worn, 214 

Monastic dress, appendix i 

Eastern, 234 

Monuments, etc., cited — 

Arundel, 156 

Bamberg, 102, 125 

Bathampton, 85 

Beverley, 71, 157 

Birmingham, 145 

Broadwater, 156 

Caerleon, 49 

Cambridge, 150 



Monuments, etc., cited— continued 

Chesham Bois, 172, 173 

Cobham, 145 

Ely, 74, 133, 202 

Fontevraud, 230 

Fulbourne, 156 

Havant, 156 

Hereford, 145, 219 

Horsham, 220 

Kilkenny, 90 

Liibeck, 193 

Mayence, 100, 117, 118, 125 

Milton, 77 

Norwich, 219 

Oxford, 125, 145 

Randworth, 78 

Ravenna, 46 

St David's, 80 

Salisbury', 1 17 

Sessay, 147 

Shelford, Great, 156 

Towyn, 71 

Wells, 144, 201, 215, 216, 

Winwick, 83 

Worcester, 67 

Wyvenhoe, 76 
Morse, no, 147 
Mozetta, 142, 148 
Msane, 190 

Names of vestments, 68 
Narbonne, bishop of, rebuked, 26 

council of. See Council 

Nestorian vestments, 189 
Nicholas I, Pope, 51 
Numbers, Book of, quoted, 9 

'Qlio(p6piov, 50, 176, 187, 191, 233 
Orale, 64, 134, I53 
'Qpapiov, 50, 176, 184, 191, 233 
Orarium, 27, 28, 47i 73- -^^'^ ^^^^ 


derivation of name, 38 

secular, 38, 49 

canons respecting, 39, 40, 41 

origin of, 38, 49, 50 

Oriental embroidery, 162 
Origin of vestments, chap, i 
Ornamentation of vestments, 58, 

66, S7, \Soet seqq. 
Ornaments rubric, 200 

Orphreys, 72, 73, 87, 88, 153 

Orro, 177, 184 

Ostia, Bishops of, their privileges, 

Ostiarius, 213 
Ouches, 7 

Paenula, 43, 44, 49i 186 

Pall, 64, 187. See also Pallium 

material and development of, 


history of individual speci- 
mens, 99 

by whom and when worn, 

96, 100, 102 

symbolism of, 102 

cost of, 104 

not ornamented, 98, 152 

Pallium, monastic cloak, 26, 46, 

^35' 245 

vestment = pall, 29, 47-5 1> 


linostimum, 34, 40, 52 

Paris, Matthew, quoted, 163 
Parker, consecration of Arch- 

"bishop, 198 
Pasbans, 177, 182 
Pastoral staff, 27, 64 ^ 

by whom carried, 28, 57, 


origin of, 56 

description and development 

of, 57, 126 et seqq. 
erroneous views concerning, 


Irish form of, 1 26 et seqq. 

infula of, 129 

symbolism of, 129, 1 31 

IlarEpecro-a, 176, 188, 191 

Paul, St, quoted, 22, 35 

Pavia, Bishops of, their privileges, 

Peacock, Mr E., quoted, 170 
Pectoral cross, 134, 188, 189, 191 

orphrey, 88 

Pelagians, Jerome's letter against 

the, 17, 19 
Pellicea, 140 
Periods of history of vestments, 

Perizona, 109 
ntraXov, 112, 113 



^aCKovT], 35 

Phaino, 177, 186 

^aivoKiov^ 176, 186, 191, 233, 234 

Pileus, 151, 256. See also Cap 

Pins of pall, 97, 98 

symbolism of, 104 

Planeta, 28 

secular, 44 

Plate, gold on mitre, Levitical, 10 

apostolic, 112 

Plautus quoted, 43 

Pollux, Julius, quoted, 43 

Polybius cited, 20 

Polycrates quoted, 113 

Poor-ourar, 176, 184 

Pope, grant of pall by, 51, 99, 214 

his bearing the pastoral staff, 

57, 131 
insignia of, 105, 106, 119, 

130, 134, 135, 139, 214 
Prayer-Book of 1549, 195 

1552, 197 

^1559. 197 

Prazona, 190 

Pre-sanctified, Mass of, 217, 220 
Presbyterians, vestments of, 205 
Priests, insignia of, 27, 41, 74, 

Priest's cap, Levitical, 5 
Primitive period of vestments, 

chap, i, 25 
Processional vestments, chap, iv 

chasuble, 82 

Pseudo-AIcuin. See Alcuin 

Rabanus Maurus quoted, 12, 62, 

68, 89, 92, 96, 122 
Rational, 64, 110-112, 152 
Ravenna, mosaics at, 4648 

John, Bishop of, 53 

Reformed churches, vestments of, 

chap, vi 
Reichel, Rev. O. J., 50 
Requiem, vestments worn at, 223 
Rhinthon cited, 43 
Ring, 54, 64 
by whom worn, 27, 54, 214, 

description and symbolism 

of, 123 
Ripon Treasurer's Rolls quoted, 


Ritual uses of vestments, chap, vii 
Roba Talaris, 254 
Robe of the ephod, 6 
Rochet, 141, 199 

Rock, Dr, quoted, 48, 49, 66, 67, 
75, 85, 106, 108, 114, 115, 134, 

135. 144 
Roman civil costume, 14 et seqq.^ 

chap, ii passim 
Rubenius, Albertus, quoted, 38 
Rulers of the choir, their insignia, 

131, 221 

Sabanum, 171 

Sabellis, Cencio de, 107, 108 

Sacramentary of Gregory the 

Great, 55 
Sagavard, 177, 188, 189 
2rtK:/cog, 176, 188, 191, 234 
Salisbury missal quoted, 68 
Sampson, Thomas, quoted, 199 
Samuel, Book of, quoted, 8 

wears ephod, 8 

Sandals, 64 

development and description 

of, 90» 91, 95 
by whom worn, 91, 214 

symbolism of, 92 et seqq.^ 


ornamentation of, 91, 152 

Armenian, 189 

Saul, 8 

Scapular, 235, 245 

Scarf of honour, 1^ 

of English church, 203 

of Presbyterian church, 


Scarlet days, 255 

Scipio, 33 

Scotland, vestments in, 203 

Act of Assembly of church 

of, 209 
Senchus Mor cited, 128 
Septuagint cited, 18 
Severus, edict concerning paenula, 

Shaesha, 234 
Shapich, 176, 180 
Shoes, Malabar. 177 
Shoochar, 177, 189 
Shorshippa, 190 
Simples, 220 



Simplicity of early vestments, 

Sinker, Dr., quoted, 113 

Spain, vestments in, 204 

Staff. See Pastoral Staff 

Stockings, 64 

by whom worn, 105, 214 

symbolism of, 105 

ornamentation of, 152 

Srotxapiov, 176, 178, 191, 233 

Stola in Gallican church, 29, 135 
See also Orarium, Stole 

Stole, 64, 182 

origin of, 72 

description of, "Jl, 75 

how worn, 74, 214 

symbolism of, 75 

ornamentation of, 1 51 

Spanish, 204 

worn by kings, 230 

baptismal, 222 

2roXj7, 18 

Stolone, 215 

Subcingulum, 64, 214 

history of, 106 et seqq. 

Subdeacons, insignia of, 28, 132, 

Subiaco, fresco at, 108 

Succinctorium. See Subcingulum 

Sudarium, 50 

Superpellicea, 140. See also Sur- 

Surplice, origin of, 140 

development and description 

of, 141 

varieties of, 141 

in England, 201 

in Scotland, 204 

when worn, 140, 217, 255 

Sweden, vestments in, 194 
Sylvester, Pope, decree respecting 

dress, 34-36, 47, 52, 81 
Symbolism, 56, 57, 68, 69, 70, 72, 
75. 77^ 79. 81, 85, 89, 92-96, 
102-105, 121, 123, 129, 131, 
176, 180, 184, 187 
Symmachus grants a pallium, 


Synagogue models followed by 

Early Christians, 13 
Synod of Dublin, 169 
Fife, 210 

Tabard, 256 

Talith, 14 

Talmud quoted, 10 

Temple worship, 13 

Teraphim, 9 

Tertullian quoted, 114 

Theodore, Archbishop of Laurea- 

cus, 51 
Theodoret quoted, 17, 18 
Thomas of Canterbury, St, his 

chasuble, 86 
Tiara, 112 

papal, 119, 121 

Tippet, 254, 255 
Toga, 42, 45, 48 

university, 254 

Toledo, Council of. See Council 
Transitional period of vestments, 

chap, ii 
Trebellius Pollio quoted, 29 
Treves, Pope bears pastoral staff 

in, 132 
Tunic of linen, 4, 30 

of blue, 6 

monastic, 235 

Tunica Alba. See Alba 

Dalmatica. See Dalmatica 

Manicata, 32 

Tunicle, 64 

description of, 132 

by whom worn, 132, 214 

ornamentation of, 133, 153 

illegal in English church, 


University costume, 253 

Urban V. adds crown to tiara, 

Vakass, 176, 188 

Valerian quoted, 30 

Value of vestments, 164 

Vartabeds, insignia of, 1S9 

Velum, 245 

quadrigesimale, 228 

Verona, Bishops of, their privi- 
leges, 102 

Vestimentum parvolum in Gallican 
church, 29, 135 

Vesting, order of, 217, 231 

Vienne, Bishop of, rebuked, 



Vigilius, grant of a pallium by, 

Virgilius, Archbishop of Aries, 

Vopiscus, Flavius, quoted, 38 

Walafrid Strabo quoted, 


Waldenses, vestments among, 206 

Zando, 177, 182 

Zwj/j;, 176, 186, 191, 234 

Zosimio, Procurator of Syria, 

Zunnara, 190 
Zunro, 177, 186 


Elliot Stock. Paternoster R 01V. London. 


Page 47, line 2, for maniple read mappula. 
Page 61, line 2, for Walfrid read Walafrid. 
Page 74, line i of footnote, yijr Goodrich r^a^ Goodrick. 
Page ^T, line 3 of footnote, /(jrWhittlesford read Milton. 
Page 106, last line, y^r succinctorium read subcingulum (also called 
succinctorium '). 
Page 1 10, 











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